Understanding Umbrella FAQs
Here is a collection of some of the most commonly asked questions in relation to our umbrella solutions.
If you have any questions which our Understanding Umbrella FAQs are unable to help with please contact us for assistance.
What is an umbrella solution?
Our umbrella solutions employ you the contractor under a permanent overarching employment contract, supplies you for short-term assignments and processes your payroll. It is comparatively cheaper and incurs less administration than setting up your own limited company, particularly if you are not a career temp. See here for further umbrella solution information.
What is an overarching employment contract?
An overarching employment contract is one where there can be a series of short term assignments in different places, where there can be gaps in assignments, but where the employment contract does not come to an end because of these gaps. The employment contract will make provision for a guaranteed number of hours work offered in any 12 month period and holiday pay.
For these reasons the contract is a full time permanent employment contract.
Can anyone use an umbrella solution?
Umbrella solutions may be used by any freelancer, or temporary worker, subject to proof of entitlement to work. However umbrella solutions may be of benefit if you have a limited company rate over £10.50 per hour.
What are the benefits of an umbrella solution?
What are the benefits of using FPS Group?
How does an umbrella solution work?
FPS Group will raise invoices for the hours you have worked and any reimbursed expenses to the agency/end client at the appropriate limited company rate(s) and these funds become your company’s income. From these the administration fee, any processed allowable business mileage and reimbursed expenses, Employers pension contributions, Employers National Insurance contributions and Apprenticeship Levy (if applicable) are deducted to arrive at your 'Gross Salary'.
Your Gross Salary will be subject to tax (PAYE), Employees National Insurance and Employees pension contributions thus providing a Net Salary. Your Net Salary and processed allowable business mileage will be paid into your bank account.
Before starting work via your company, you will be provided with an illustration showing these calculations, together with a guide to umbrella which provides further information on how an our umbrella solutions work. You will also be allocated a named member of staff at FPS Group who will be able to assist with any queries you may have.
What is my employment status using an umbrella?
You are an employee of your company with an employment contract in place with them. Your company will raise invoices for the work you undertake and will execute payments to you as necessary. As an employee you benefit from all the benefits and statutory rights associated with full time employment.
Once signed up how do I start using the umbrella?
You will need to do the following from within your client portal:
- Read and authorise FPS Groups Terms and Conditions.
- Read and authorise your employment contract.
- Verify your bank details.
- Post in a hard copy P45.
- Complete our Supervised, Directed or Controlled questionnaire (SDCQ).
ID check: In order to verify your identity, please send us a copy of an acceptable form of identification such as your passport (for UK Nationals only we only require the 30 digit long passport number at the bottom of your passport). Full details of what documents are acceptable are also shown within the client portal.
How do I access the client portal?
You will set your own password as part of the initial registration process which you will need to use to access the client portal through the client log-in on the homepage of this website. Once you are in possession of your login details, access to the portal will be a quick and secure process for you.
I've started a new contract with a different client / recruitment agency, what do I do?
Please contact our client services team on 0800 634 4848 with the following information:
- Your recruitment agency / client's details.
- Contract rate (limited company rate).
- Start date and end date of your contract.
Why do recruitment agencies use umbrella solutions?
Umbrella solutions help agencies to minimise their overheads, employment risk and administrative burden of the management of temporary employees. We allow agencies more time to focus on their core function which is to source and place talent in relevant roles.
How much do our umbrella solutions cost?
FPS Group deduct an administration fee from your invoice total in order to undertake your payroll administration. We charge from just £15 per week for our umbrella solutions. This low fee is highly competitive compared to many other umbrella company solutions on the market which continue to charge fees of between £20 to £30.
Do you charge any setup or exit fees?
No we do not charge either of these fees – you only pay for our umbrella solution when you use the service. It is easy to setup and leave at any point granting you great flexibility.
Does it matter if I work for more than one agency?
It does not matter how many agencies you are registered with – our umbrella solutions allow you to work across a range of different agencies in an organised and hassle free manner.
What is a 'limited company / assignment rate' and why don't I get this full amount?
This is the amount your agency or end client has agreed to pay your company for your services. This rate is usually higher than the rate an agency would be paying you if they employed you directly. It is calculated to include the costs of employing you via your company, including Employers National Insurance contributions, pension contributions and administration costs.
What is the difference between Flex and Standard Umbrella solutions?
With Flex Umbrella, once you accept FPS Groups Terms and Conditions the umbrella solution company belongs to you. This company is 'Limited by Guarantee' and you are the sole 'guarantor'. This means you own the company but you have only 'guaranteed, to a maximum £1 spend to secure this ownership.
FPS Group will provide the directors for the company. We will undertake all the directorship activity; you have no directors’ responsibilities yourself as long as we administer the company.
Once you have agreed the Employment Agreement, completed all the alerts, provided your entitlement to work and Know Your Customer documentation, you will be employed on an overarching employment contract and entitled to salary, bonus and holiday payments in accordance with this contract. You will be the sole employee of the company.
The key difference with Standard Umbrella is that there will be lots of contractors working for the same company, the company does not belong to you and you are not the guarantor. The core fundamentals of each solution are exactly the same, with only subtle variations in the structure of the umbrella company setting them apart from each other.