Contractor Umbrella

We will pay you on time, everytime and we will take care of all your tax and nic


Our sign-up process is fast and easy, with just five easy steps.

Why choose WIS Umbrella?

Our registration process is quick and easy – one page, five steps, and you can start work within 24 hours.

We pay the very next day, into your personal account, with no additional fee for the transfer.

If your circumstances change and you need to move from the umbrella to a limited company, that’s fast and simple too, and there’s no additional charge.

With WIS, you get a dedicated personal employee liaison officer – someone who knows you and your work and will respond quickly to your queries, whether they arrive by email or phone.

We have a smart online portal for submitting timesheets and expenses, and viewing payslips, which works just as well on your mobile as from your desktop.

But don’t take our word for it – we have five-star ratings on both Google reviews and Facebook based on customers’ own positive experiences of working with us.

What is an umbrella company?

Third-party umbrella companies, sometimes called ‘payroll umbrellas’, offer contractors a convenient way to remove the burden of timesheet processing, invoicing, and pay.

They employ contractors directly, paying them through PAYE on behalf of the end client.

Why use an umbrella company?

Put simply, they keep arrangements clean and simple.

Many firms prefer contractors to take this approach, too, because it reduces paperwork and complexity on their side.

As well as easier administration, umbrella companies offer a full range of employee rights and benefits – from sick pay to maternity leave.

For those who find themselves undertaking one short contract after another, working through an umbrella can reduce bureaucracy and paperwork.

They can also be a great way to dip your toe in the world of contracting with minimal fuss and trouble, to decide if it is the long-term career path for you.

What would be your take-home pay?

Please use the calculator below to work out your take-home pay.

*Fees may vary depending on the pay frequency.


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Umbrella vs. limited company

Contractors employed through umbrellas pay more tax than if they operated their own limited company.

On top of that, they must also make national insurance contributions (NICs) and pay the umbrella company’s fees.

For many, though, that additional price is more than good value given the ease of the arrangement, and the reduction in administration costs.

Forming your own limited company, on the other hand, will usually mean you take home more of your pay, but brings with it many legal and tax obligations, including submitting annual accounts and keeping formal records.

It also incurs administrative costs which might be more or less bearable depending on your earnings.

Another important point  to consider is IR35, which does not apply to workers who are employed by an umbrella company.

IR35 applies only to limited company arrangements.

If a worker is ‘outside’ IR35, they are entitled to draw dividends from the company which do not attract NICs.

If they are ‘inside’ IR35, they must take their salary through PAYE or the umbrella company.

Claiming expenses

Operating within the structures of a limited company offers opportunities to claim expenses against the business.

If you buy office equipment, for example, or subscribe to essential trade journals, you will be able to deduct those costs from your company’s turnover.

Working under an umbrella company means you won’t have this option.

In broad terms, you will be treated like a permanent employee, so you won’t be able to claim tax relief against the cost of your commute to the office, for example, or ordinary meals taken during a standard working day.

If you have a valid chargeable expense that was reimbursed to you from your clients, such allowable expenses are simply a reimbursement of the actual expenditure incurred and can be paid back to you free of income tax and NICs.


Q: Will WIS help me blur or conceal the nature of my employment arrangements to minimise tax payments?

No, WIS will not do this.

We are happy to work with you to decide whether the umbrella or limited company structure will work best for you, but it is always best to be straightforward and honest, and compliance with UK tax law is non-negotiable.

We advise against using offshore arrangements, complex pay-by-loan schemes, or other risky tax-avoidance measures.

Q: Which is better, working under an umbrella, or through a limited company?

There is no straightforward answer. Everybody’s circumstances are different, and we recommend an in-depth conversation with one of our advisers.

For a quick readout, though, use our take-home pay calculator above. Call us on 020 30 111898 and we will be happy to help.

Q: What are the fees and deductions?

We charge £60 per pay run for the administration of the umbrella.

PAYE tax, NICs and a contribution to the apprenticeship levy are deduced from the fee that is charged to contracting companies or agencies.

We regularly run special promotions and it is best to call us to agree on the final fee.

Q: Will I still have to complete a personal tax return if I’m employed through WIS umbrella?

WIS will process tax payments through PAYE. If all of your work is conducted through us it is unlikely you will need to complete a separate self-assessment tax return.

There are exceptions, however, such as if you were at any point in the preceding tax year:

  • self-employed as a ‘sole trader’ and earned more than £1,000
  • a partner in a business partnership
  • rented out a property
  • earned tips or commission
  • derived income from savings, investments or dividends.

We can definitely assist you with this if needed through our accountancy company, for which separate terms and conditions apply.


WIS Umbrella Ltd is a company registered in England and Wales with Company Number 11633444. VAT Number 307927978.

Our registered address is: 4 Imperial Place, Maxwell Road, Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, WD6 1JN.


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