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As a small business owner you may not have lots of money sloshing around. You know your staff are your most important asset, but you may not be able to afford to give them a pay rise.

So how can you be an attractive company to work for, motivate and reward staff and promote loyalty without increasing your pay bill?

Believe it or not, introducing employee benefits may be the answer. There is a range of benefits which won’t be a cost to your company and will actually provide savings by reducing your tax liability. These are known as salary sacrifice arrangements.
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When Lloyd George’s Liberal government first introduced National Insurance (NI) payments in 1911, the aim was to provide a safety-net for workers who fell on hard times.

The scheme took money out of workers’ wages, and in return they could get money from the government to pay for medical treatment, or if they lost their job.
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This is the 2011/12 NICs table. The employers’ NI rate has increased by 1% to 13.8%, and the main Class 1 rate for employees has risen from 11% to 12%.

Class 2 and Class 4 contributions, paid by the self employed, have also increased.
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