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BizReport : Law & Regulation : April 17, 2013


British 'home webtailers' must pay attention to insurance, tax

Millions of people in the UK now operate a business from home selling products via the Internet, according to new statistics from Direct Line for Business. However, a large number aren't up to date with their insurance needs.

by Helen Leggatt

Eight million people in the UK sell products they've made, or bought in, over the Internet, found Direct Line for Business. Dubbed "home webtailers", 65% (5.2 million) of these often sizeable outfits buy items to resell on at a profit. The remaining 2.8 million sell products they have crafted themselves.

The entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in the UK. However, while developing a business plan and buying in new stock are top priorities for home webtailers, sorting tax arrangements and organizing insurance aren't deemed as important, ranking sixth and eighth in Direct Line's research.

Yet, with the top 5% of home webtailers generating a healthy annual turnover of around £18,094, many aren't aware that they may be classified as running a business from home. This has both tax and insurance implications:

- Those operating a business from home on top of other employment may need to pay tax on all turnover generated through online sales;

- Stock stored at home will not be covered by general home insurance;

- Products being transported require insurance during transit, and personal vehicle insurance may need to be revised.

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: ecommerce, insurance, online retail, reseller, small business, tax, UK










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