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Just qualified? Salaried GP, a Locum GP or accept a partnership as a GP Principal ?

I have just qualified and I can't decide whether to be a salaried GP, a locum GP or accept a partnership as a GP principal - how can I make up my mind? 

You need to set out your personal priorities and, once you have established these, conduct your own research and on top of this take professional advice – this is not a straight forward like for like comparison.

If you are a salaried GP your circumstances don’t change at all from being a registrar. You can go on paying your tax in the form of PAYE, National Insurance and your superannuation contributions remain the same, or similar, and are deducted for you by your employer.

From a GP locum perspective you are self-employed, responsible to HMRC for your own tax return but you can earn more than a salaried GP on two fronts. On the first, in terms of flexibility you can work as little or as much as you like so life style and money become a genuine trade off. On the second, as a locum GP there is an opportunity to have more tax deductible expenses. Travel expenses are a good example of this, as you are registered as operating from your home address the journeys to and from home become a tax deductible expense. 

When joining a partnership as a GP principal you are self-employed, again responsible for your own tax returns but without the tax deductible advantages of being registered working from home. However if you are joining a well-run, profitable practice you could be taking a stake in something that’s growing and already successful at the start of your career - but you will need to take advice.  Practices differ wildly, some are successful, clinically excellent and well run but others fall short. Depending on different scenarios there may be a requirement to borrow money to pay your share of the working capital of the practice or ownership of the surgery premises. In a situation like this interest on that loan would be an allowable expense for example on a £1,000 interest payment on a loan, an individual being taxed in the 40 per cent bracket would receive a £400 cash benefit.

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  • Very smooth changeover to BW, with good communication at all times. Very efficient in the production of the accounts (as promised) and the Partners are delighted with the advice received to date.

    Practice Manager
  • BW Medical Accountants have a good working knowledge of General Practice and are keenly aware of the challenges Practices face within the changing environment of the NHS.  Benfield Park have been very impressed by the way BW Medical continue to deliver the range of services they provide from Accounts to Tax and NHS Pension advice. 

    We have found Practice consultation and engagement from BW Medical specifically helpful to shape the future of the Practice.

    Senior Partner
    Benfield Park Medical Group, Newcastle
  • We had no hesitation in moving to BW Medical Accountants.  For any business your accountant is integral, and for us one of the most important factors to this relationship is to have a personal and trusting approach, which BW have undoubtedly achieved. 

    The service we receive and the interest they show in our practice assures us that they have a genuine interest in us and commitment to us.  More importantly they are always helpful and polite to answer even the dumbest of questions!  They give us confidence and reassurance knowing that they are always very up-to-date with all the numerous changes within general practice and we would have no hesitation in recommending them to other practices seeking a professional and personal accountancy service.

    Jackie Rotherham, Practice Manager
    The James Street Family Practice, Lincolnshire
  • We moved to BW Medical Accountants in 2013 and we are delighted that we have.  Having been in the same business for over 20 years it is important to have a relationship with the accountancy team but most importantly you need to have trust.  We made the decision to move our business to BW Medical Accountants and having worked with the Team especially Tina we are very satisfied.  Tina going through the accounts brought to our attention many things that I was not aware of in the past.  The first years' experience can only be described as excellent.

    Customer service is first and foremost with BW and this shines through as each and every one of them are approachable, helpful and most importantly understand and know the business.  General practice is complex and is going to get more complex in the coming years.  We need Accountants who truly understand our business. We as a practice and as individuals would certainly recommend BW Medical Accountants.

    Gloria Middleton, Managing Partner
    Westbourne Medical Group, Sunderland
  • We changed to BW Medical Accountants and I would say we have just had the most transparent and understandable end of year meeting and the best planning advice I have ever had in 16 years of practice.

    GP Partner

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