National Work-Life Week: 21 per cent of freelancers spent their summer holiday chasing late payment

For National Work-Life Week, IPSE is calling on government to clamp down on late payment, to allow the UK’s 4.9-million self-employed workforce to enjoy a better work-life balance.


A recent report by the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed, ‘Taking time off as a freelancer’, finds that nine per cent of freelancers took no days off in the last year. This is despite 59 per cent of freelancers finding that time off gives them a better work-life balance.

Even more concerning is the fact that 21 per cent of freelancers spent time while on holiday chasing late payment. Furthermore, a staggering 58 per cent of freelancers reply to work-related emails while on holiday.

The report calls on the government to end late payment culture to stop freelancers having to chase clients during their time off.

Inna Yordanova, Senior Researcher at IPSE and author of the report, said: “A good work-life balance is essential for wellbeing and mental health. And many people go into self-employment for just that reason: for the flexibility to fit their work around their life, rather than the other way around.

“Our research has found, however, that late payment is a major factor holding many freelancers back from a good work-life balance. Chasing late payments is creating extra stress and taking up disproportionate amounts of freelancers’ time – an average of 20 days a year, in fact.

“To support freelancers across the UK, the government must help them achieve a better work-life balance and improve payment culture. That’s why we’re calling on the government to give more powers to the Small Business Commissioner to clamp down on late payment and even fine the worst offenders.”

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