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How do I pay tax as a videographer?

We've updated this guide on 6th October 2021

As a freelance filmmaker or videographer, you have to pay taxes like any other sole trader. 

You will need to complete a Self Assessment and then pay tax via a tax return.

How much tax do I pay if I’m also employed?

This depends on how much you earn. 

If you do videography outside your full-time position as a side-gig, you can take advantage of the Trading Allowance. It allows you to earn up to £1,000 on top of your salaried income, tax-free. 

Anything you earn over £1,000 is taxed at the normal rate of tax you pay. If you’re not sure how much you normally pay, take a look at the table below:

IncomeTax rateTax band
Up to £12,5700%Personal Allowance
£12,571 – £50,27020%Basic Rate
£50,271 – £150,00040%Higher Rate
£150,000 +50%Additional Rate

What tax do I pay if I’m a full-time freelance videographer?

If you freelance full time, there are three types of tax that you should pay:

Both Class 2 and Class 4 national insurance must be paid even if you earn less than the tax-free Personal Allowance. 

Class 2 National insurance is a fixed rate that you pay on earnings over £6,515. Class 4 National Insurance is 9% of your self-employment profits over £9,568.

To calculate what you owe in Income Tax, check out our Income Tax Calculator. Income Tax is only paid on earnings over the tax-free Personal Allowance threshold.

How do videographer expenses work?

You can claim videography and filmmaker expenses against your income to reduce the tax that you pay. It’s really important to record everything that you earn and all of your business spending. If you have an electronic copy of everything, that’s even better, but if you keep paper records, that’s also fine. 

Here’s a list of allowable expenses that you can claim as a videographer:

  • Camera equipment
  • Travel expenses (to shoots or client meetings)
  • Microphone
  • Tool kits
  • Gaffer tape
  • Video software packages
  • Editing software
  • Rent or space hire (for filming on location)
  • Equipment insurance

In fact, you can claim back anything that you can prove was an expense for your videography/filmmaking business.

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