The New Year has just hit, which means so is the Tax Return Deadline (31st January 2018). For actors, understanding tax is imperative. With the correct knowledge and guidance you can save money and time, as well as avoid tax penalties.

From the second you begin to trade as a self-employed actor you should let the HMRC know by registering as self-employed. Your income is potentially taxable.

The basic tax requirements for a self-employed individual are relatively simple. The essential taxes you will be paying are income tax; national insurance and (if your income warrants it) you will have to register for VAT.

However, as actors, your taxes are unique. There are numerous special tax rules and exemptions that apply to self-employed actors, groups of performers and companies.

As a self-employed actor it is essential to understand your professions eligible expenses and deductions. Expenses that are wholly and exclusively for the purpose of the trade are allowed to be claimed as an allowable expense for tax purposes. Some expenses have dual purpose, meaning they relate to both personal and business use. The business purpose of these elements are also claimable.

Examples of claimable expenses for actors are :