How often do our nurses get paid?
Swiis offer an efficient weekly payment service which is managed by senior payroll personnel who are available to our nurses during normal office hours for any queries they may have.
Weekly payments are cleared into the agency workers designated bank account each Friday subject to the presentation of an appropriate timesheet or proof of hours worked. Payroll and will pay all timesheets/hours received before 12 noon on a Tuesday for payment on a Friday.
Contact can be made by our nurses to the team by calling 0333 577 1000 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
How does pay vary between weekdays, weekends, bank holidays and nights?
Monday to Friday day shifts offer a standard rate of pay per hour. Night shifts and Saturday day shifts pay the same rate which is higher than the standard day shift. Finally, Sundays and bank holidays pay the highest rate per hour overall.
Does pay vary between seasons?
No, your pay per hour will be consistent across seasons.
However, it is worth noting that there is often more shifts available in the winter which give you the opportunity to earn even more than usual. Many health conditions can be caused or worsened by cold weather which together with higher incidences of so-called ‘seasonal illnesses’ (including flu and norovirus) means the NHS often faces much greater pressure in winter and so requires more agency nurses.
How does pay vary between the NHS and private sector organisations?
Generally, pay for nurses in the private sector is higher due to private clients allowing a higher charge than the NHS does.
What can affect my pay?
Timesheet completion and submission
Ensure you complete your timesheet accurately. Some simple omissions and errors are as follows:
- Have you entered your name in block capitals and signed at the top?
- Have you entered the correct week ending date?
- Have you/your manager completed the details of Hospital/Trust and ward where you worked?
- If required, has it been signed by an authorised representative of the Hospital/Trust, including initialling each row corresponding to a date you have worked?
- Have you completed the details of each shift accurately (and included the booking reference number if known)?
- Have you checked you have calculated the hours correctly?
Please then email your timesheet to email@example.com. This is the simplest and most reliable method.
Client systems & processes
Some clients use third party software to manage their agency shifts. These often require input from members of staff at the hospital/trust. Sometimes this input is delayed, for example a ward manager may not get around to authorising a shift online or a particular process is designed to run weekly.
These processes are outside our control. We make every effort to ensure that this does not cause undue delay but we cannot guarantee that it will not affect the speed at which we are able to process your payment.
These systems and online portals include the following:
- NHS Professionals Portal;
- GRI (eTips);
- NHS Health Roster.
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What is an umbrella company?
An umbrella company employs contractors who are providing services to clients on a temporary contract basis.
Using an umbrella company is an alternative to being paid directly via PAYE. They are an intermediary between the nurse and where the nurse works (Such as an agency like Swiis).
What is the process for being paid by an umbrella company?
When you work with an umbrella company, the way you work will usually follow this pattern:
- The umbrella company will enter into a business-to-business contract with an employment agency;
- As the contractor, you will sign a contract directly with the umbrella company;
- You will be working for the client, who will sign a timesheet for the agency to confirm how many days/hours you have worked;
- You will be responsible for sending your timesheet to the agency as well as sending a copy to your umbrella company which will include details of your expenses as well;
- The umbrella company will invoice the agency for the hours that you have worked plus any reimbursable expenses that you may have incurred;
- The agency will, in turn, invoice the end client for your work and expenses;
- The agency is paid by the client;
- The umbrella company is then paid by the agency, according to their payment schedule.;
- The umbrella company receives the payment from the agency, including any expenses, and then deducts tax and National Insurance before paying you through the PAYE system – You will receive a payslip detailing the deductions which have been made, just as you would if you were in traditional employment;
- You will receive payment from the umbrella company, with all relevant deductions made (including a fee for their services).
Which are the best umbrella companies?
One of the disadvantages of using an umbrella company is finding one that is reputable and approved by HMRC, but Swiis make this easy as you can select one from our preferred supplier list.
The umbrella companies on this list have all undergone due-diligence with us and have confirmed that they are IR35 complaint (see IR35 section below) and deduct the appropriate tax and national insurance from your weekly income.
We recommend that you contact several before making your choice as each one may have slightly different charge rates for processing your weekly pay as well as additional services and benefits.
What is PAYE?
Nurses can receive their weekly income directly from Swiis Healthcare on a Pay As You Earn (PAYE) basis. This route is the same as how you will get paid if you worked directly for the NHS.
How does tax and national insurance work with PAYE?
If you choose to be paid PAYE, Swiis will deduct income tax and national insurance (NI) from your gross pay before we send you your money. Your payment will be accompanied by a payslip that states the dates for which you have been paid, the split between hours type and holiday pay, the amounts deducted for tax and NI and your net pay. We will use the tax code that HMRC give us to make these calculations.
It is important to note that if Swiis is your second job your tax code will always be BR (Basic Rate) this means that all income you receive from us will be taxed at 20% (or the prevailing rate at the time) and you will not have any tax-free amount.
All tax payers in the UK that earn less than £100,000 per year receives a personal allowance of £12,500 for the 19/20 tax year. This means the first £12,500 you earn in a year will be tax free. If your tax code looks like 1250L, this means you are receiving the full personal allowance. As an example, if you are paid weekly, the first £240.38 of your gross pay will be tax free.
When you start working for Swiis Healthcare and you opt for PAYE, we will notify HMRC. HMRC will then send us notice stating your tax code. We will then use that tax code to work out how much of your gross pay they can give you without deducting tax.
Many agency workers work through several agencies at once and it is only the first one that will be using your full tax code. When HMRC receive a notification from us, they will not automatically issue another tax code of 1250L as this would mean you would be receiving double your personal allowance and would owe HMRC additional tax. Instead, they will issue a BR code. This means all your income must be taxed at the basic rate (20% in 19/20 tax year) by Swiis.
How can you can ensure that we use your full tax code?
- Only work with Swiis Healthcare;
- Work through an Umbrella company as they will be your single employer and will be able to use your full tax code, even if you work with multiple agencies;
- In some cases, where for example you work through two agencies, it may be possible to split your personal allowance between them but you would need to contact HMRC yourself to organise this.
Which is the best payment option?
The best payment option that best suits will depend on your individual circumstances and which benefits are most important to you.
The main benefit of using an umbrella company is that you will receive payments from the same company, and they will know all your income details and be able to utilise your full personal tax allowance.
In addition, the benefits and value-added services may be beneficial, for example, some may offer accounting services or tax return assistance.
Which payment option pays the most?
Since 2017, changes in IR35 legislation and action from HMRC have been aiming to make sure agency workers should be contributing proportionally the same income tax and National Insurance as permanent workers doing a similar job.
Therefore, neither option has a higher salary benefit as while umbrellas do get more pay, that is before they have taken National Insurance, holiday pay and their fee so it works out to the same take-home pay that you would have got paid through PAYE.
You may be aware of the IR35 rules that were introduced on 6 April 2017 by the Government and HMRC that changed the way people working for the NHS and other public bodies via nursing agencies are taxed. They also affected people working via Personal Service Company (PSC)/ limited companies.
We have put together some useful information about IR35, so that you are aware of what has happened and how they may affect you if you are new to agency nursing.
What is IR35?
IR35 is also known as ‘intermediaries legislation’. It is basically a set of rules that affect your tax and National Insurance if you have a contract to work for a client through an intermediary.
An intermediary can be:
- Your own limited company;
- A service or personal service company (PSC);
- A partnership.
You may need to follow IR35 if you work for a client through an intermediary.
If IR35 applies for a role you are in, you will be subject to PAYE income tax and National Insurance Contributions (NICs).
The responsibility for determining a public sector intermediary (PCS/limited company) contractor’s ‘IR35 status’ moved from the contractor (e.g. a nurse who gets paid through a limited company) to the public sector body (e.g. NHS) or staffing agency (e.g. Swiis Healthcare) Contractors with a PSC/limited company operating in the public sector no longer getting a say on whether or not the IR35 ‘intermediaries legislation’ applies to them.
The organisation (public sector body or agency) employing the contractor became responsible for deducting and paying employment taxes and NICs to the tax authority.
Many more public sector contractors with PSCs and limited companies are considered to be ‘inside IR35’. This means that NICs and employment taxes are deducted directly from their pay before being paid to their PCS/limited company.
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