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For a vet making the move from full-time employment to locum work, there is a lot to think about. Where will you find work, how should you operate your business, can you claim expenses?

To help, we’ve put together a concise guide that answers a number of the common questions when making the leap into locum work.

How to go about finding work
There are a number of ways to seek out your first contracts as a locum vet. First up would be to contact colleagues within the industry—word of mouth referrals tend to lead to the most fortuitous contracts.

Beyond that, many locums find positions through recruitment agencies such as Carlton Professional and Synergy Vets.

The most important thing to remember—particularly in the early days—is not to panic. The work will come in, and before you know it you’ll be turning down more contracts than you could ever fulfill.

Considering your insurance options
It’s often the case that the practice you’re working for will provide cover while you are under contract. However, there is no guarantee that this will be the case. Also, there will be limitations to the cover you get via the practice that your own insurance would be more effective for.

As such, we’d recommend getting professional indemnity insurance put in place as soon as you can. For more information on business insurance, check out our guide here.

Claiming expenses
As with any form of self-employment you will be able to claim expenses as a locum vet. This could include fuel for travel, equipment, or training courses.

The world of expense claiming can get murky, so it’s best to chat to a professional to get into the nitty gritty.

How to set up a limited company
There are several options when it comes to setting up your business, including sole trading and umbrella companies. However, the most popular (and, in most cases, the most suitable) is operating as a limited company.

Going limited will offer better tax efficiencies and less liability than most other routes. It’s fairly easy to set up as a limited company, but remember that you’ll need things like a business bank account, VAT registration, and a unique company name. Once again, speak to a professional if you can.

Finding locum vet accountants
As the guide has suggested, making the right financial decisions for your locum career is eased massively by having a professional to lean on. We can help. Just head over to our supplier directory get started on the journey to finding the right kind of locum vet accountant for you.

You can also check out our resources for other information on running your business effectively.

 

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