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Streamers and online video makers accounts?

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Since lockdown a lot more people started making videos online and getting paid for it. Mostly it's straightforward with income being subscriptions and donations with the occasional sponsor and expenses varying depending on content they make and the hosting platform taking a cut much like ebay selling fees. 

My only concern is the Amazon and other wish lists, gift cards (which is the way they get around paying the hosting platform for larger donations) and physical items received for sponsorships.

Example: Client receives a free set of headphones from a sponsorship and gets paid £250 to brag about them in videos, the headphones themselves are worth £100 retail value. 

Client receives several items from a wishlist totalling £175 in value and a gift card for £100 but pays nothing since all costs are covered by the viewer buying the items.

 

Google and gov are useless and just keep sending me to inheritance tax, because streaming is on the rise and it’s most kids dream job. I can imagine HMRC making rules for this kind of thing but for now i can't find any and for me it's new water.

 

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By paul.benny
03rd Feb 2021 13:13

And your (anonymous) question is?

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By kestrepo
03rd Feb 2021 16:06

Happens all the time in lots of different industries. Product testing is much more more common than you think. The RRP value of any goods will be much much higher than the actual cost of the item. I wouldn't have thought a £100 set of headphones would want to be returned for hygiene reasons alone plus the shipping to return them and then the disposal costs are probably way higher than they actually cost to produce! For the amounts you are talking about I would disregard. If the values go above the HMRC recommend Trading Allowance limit of £1K I would advise / warn the client to start to thinking about potentially declaring the income from gifts cards and wishlists in the future. I am sure others in the forum may have some more creative ideas for you!

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By Mr_awol
04th Feb 2021 03:22

Are we talking product reviews/affiliate marketing, online fitness classes,or only fans?

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By Wanderer
04th Feb 2021 04:34

Can you draw any parallels with HMRC's guidance on athletes:-
https://www.gov.uk/hmrc-internal-manuals/business-income-manual/bim50626

"If the athlete is carrying on a trade, the value of the non-cash payment is taxed as trading income in the same way as a cash payment. See BIM50606, Example 3."

The issues are discussed here:-
https://www.icaew.com/technical/tax/tax-faculty/taxline/taxline-2019/nov...

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Replying to Wanderer:
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By Tax Dragon
04th Feb 2021 07:36

That sounds like a specific example of a general principle - that being given something (cash, something other than cash) because you trade* is a profit of that trade. I should think the general principle would (also) apply in the OP's case*.

*In the OP's case, it's likely not just "because you trade", it's explicitly in expectation of service - you'll review the something in question and air your review in your shop window. A reward for service. Erm, we probably don't even need to reach for the above general principle (unless, just possibly, the answers to Mr_awol's questions so require).

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Replying to Tax Dragon:
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By Wanderer
04th Feb 2021 08:38

Yes I agree, I was really trying to assist the OP's thought process and that's why I thought the comparison and a read through would be helpful to them.

I think people struggle with the fact that many of these 'influencers' start out as complete amateurs who are doing it for personal fame, without an expectation of profit. There reaches a point however when someone is willing to start paying them. And those payments may not always be in cash. And these payments are often perceived to be 'voluntary'. Hence the comparison from unpaid to paid athletes.

This may not be the OP's point at all. Perhaps, on a re-read, it is just if / how the various items are valued to bring them into account.

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