The Royal British Legion


Self employment: pros & cons

Self-employment is an attractive option if you've always wanted to work for yourself or if you have recently become unemployed or redundant. It allows you the flexibility to choose your own hours, and to work from home and around family commitments. Three and a half million people in the UK are self-employed. If you are serious about joining them, you will first need to thoroughly research how to set up and run a business. This includes choosing a business, registering for taxes, training, getting funding, insurance etc. The rewards can be great, but you will also need to consider the risks involved.


  • be your own boss
  • reap the rewards of your success
  • you do not have to pay income tax until the January following the end of your first year of trading
  • national insurance costs less
  • you can claim tax relief on transport, office decorating and equipment, advertising and books
  • you will have greater freedom than if you were employed.


  • you will have to make provision for your own pension
  • if you are unwell and unable to work you will not earn anything
  • you will not get paid if you take a holiday
  • you will probably have to work long hours
  • you will be responsible for any losses.

There is lots of help available for you to become self-employed. Follow the links on this page. 

The Royal British Legion - Live On

 0800 009 8015

PO Box 375
SG12 4FH

Employers and Service Providers: 0845 680 0838