Can You Be Employed and Self-Employed?

Whether you are a side-hustler, aspiring entrepreneur or working on your master plan to work for yourself, being employed and self-employed at the same time is a great way to keep the money coming in while you build your dream.

Can you be Employed and Self-Employed at the same time?

Yes! In fact, for those going self-employed, holding onto a job can be a great way to get together the startup money needed or provide much-needed income until their business is able to pay them a salary.

I recommend you check whether you are under any contract that prohibits you from being self-employed.

I also advise you against treading on your Employers toes, for example, by stealing clients. You don’t want to get a bad reputation and jeopardise your employment.

How Does Tax Works When You Are Employed and Self-Employed

If you have found additional work or are going self-employed on the side of your job, then there are some tax and national insurance implications you need to be aware of.

The money you earn being self-employed is untaxed.

It’s unlike your payslip, where your employer takes responsibility for calculating, deducting and paying over income tax and national insurance on your behalf.

When you’re self-employed you are responsible for working out your own taxes and filling out a self-assessment tax return form.

How Much Tax Do You Pay

The amount of income tax you pay depends on the total you earn across all your forms of income.

The current income tax rates are:

Personal Allowance£12,500£12,500
Basic rate 20%£12,501 to £50,000£12,501 to £50,000
Higher rate 40%£50,001 and £150,000£50,001 and £150,000
Additional rate 45%over £150,000over £150,000

You must also pay Class 2 and Class 4 national insurance on your self-employment profits.

Here are the current rates:

Small profits threshold – no NICs below this threshold£6,475£6,365
Class 2 National Insurance£3.05 per week£3.00 per week
Small profits threshold – no NICs below this threshold£9,501£8,632
Class 4 National Insurance 9%£50,000£50,000
Class 4 National Insurance 2%over £50,000over £50,000

Tax and National Insurance When You’re Self-Employed (+ Free Calculator)

Example of working out your tax when you’re employed and self-employed:

Kim is employed in a part-time job, earning £15,000 and self-employed making profits of £10,000.

Kim will pay income tax of £2,500 on her combined earnings of £25,000. She will also pay Class 2 National Insurance of £156 and Class 4 National Insurance £327.

Income tax will be deducted by her employer so Kim will be able to deduct this before paying HMRC.

Do I have to pay Class 2 NIC if I am employed and self-employed?

You have to pay Class 2 national insurance even you are employed and paying Class 1.

Only only pay Class 2 national insurance once your self-employment earnings go above a certain threshold.

Depending on your earnings you may be able to apply to HMRC to reduce your class 4 national insurance contributions under the rules of the HMRC Annual Maximum.

Updated 4 February 2020

Anita Forrest
About Anita Forrest

Anita Forrest is a Chartered Accountant, spreadsheet geek, money nerd and creator of - a UK small business finance blog where she shares help and advice with the self-employed community to make topics like registering a business, bookkeeping and taxes easy to understand.