Locum Resources

If you are looking to work as a Locum Veterinary Surgeon or Locum Veterinary Nurse here are some resources you might find useful!

Locum Vacancies Search

Vacancies for locum vets or locum veterinary nurses are varied in both type of work and practice requirements. From day practice, weekend work, positions with no out of hours to emergency work only, you can choose which direction you want to take. At Vet Connect, we also cater to and take vacancies for practices across the animal species; small animal, mixed practice, equine practices, and any combination thereof.

If you would like to know more about working as either a Locum Veterinary Nurse or Locum Veterinary Surgeon please contact recruit@vet-connect.co.uk or call 0115 9459900

Locum Contractor Options

Making the right decision concerning your financial arrangements is a crucial part of undertaking veterinary locum work. It affects your earnings and, in some cases, can affect your suitability for specific vacancies. Historically, most locums were self-employed ,however we are seeing a definite shift towards a clinic preference for locums who are either using an Umbrella company or running their own Limited Company.

There are are advantages and disadvantages to both, and their appropriateness for your situation will vary. Working as a self-employed contractor though can pose significant limitations on the availability of work so it is worthwhile exploring what other options may be suitable for your situation.

There are also legislative changes that came in in early 2016 that will affect the way that an Umbrella Company can maximise the expenses legislation on your behalf and so, the use of an Umbrella Company is likely to become much less cost-effective. Setting up an Limited Company can appear daunting but with the right advice and information, it’s actually a lot less complicated than you may think.

You can check your employment status here

Limited Company

Limited Companies are perceived by many clinics as the ‘preferred’ way to engage a locum vets and can offer improved tax efficiency if you intend to work as a locum on a long term basis. There are set-up and year end costs involved, and you must be prepared for the additional administration involved.

Umbrella Company

An Umbrella Company, is essentially a financial service that you engage with to invoice and deduct Income Tax and National Insurance at source. They effectively become your payroll department. They will invoice your practices for you, help you to maximise your earnings through compliant expense allowances, and can be engaged on a pay as you go basis. By taking care of your tax at source, you can avoid any complicated tax returns and eliminate the risk of an IR35 to the client practice.

Under IR35 (tax legislation involving contractors - a veterinary locum is a contractor under its terms), Umbrella companies are given dispensations on certain expenses, and so they do not have to complete a P11D (expense return form) to declare them. This is to your benefit, though you should keep receipts for the expenses you claim.

They are convenient and flexible, however over time their fees may total more than running your own company. There are additional National Insurance costs involved, and realistically you must be able to legitimately offset expenses to make the sums work in your favour, but as a shorter term solution it can be a good option if you prefer not to have to run the finances yourself.

There are a number of Umbrella Companies in the marketplace and although we are not affiliated to any here are the ones we come across most often.

Impact Contacting



Whether someone is employed or self-employed depends upon the terms and conditions of the relevant engagement and as such, you have to be aware of; and working with active compliance within the framework of the IR35 legislation. There are a number of questions that have to be answered in order to establish whether a person is self-employed or not.

We would advise any Locum going down this route to seek professional guidance from an accountant or to speak to HMRC.

Here is a guidance link to IR35

Useful Links:
  • Self Assessment: forms ordering
  • Telephone: 0300 200 3610
  • Outside UK: +44 161 930 8331
  • Fax: 0300 200 3611
  • HM Revenue & Customs newly self-employed helpline – Phone: 0300 200 3500

Alternatively, visit https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/hm-revenue-customs for more information.


Our veterinary recruitment agency has worked with a number of new self-employed vets so if you have any questions, need any advice, or just need pointing in the right direction, then please contact us. However, while we have many years’ experience in recruitment, we are not financial or tax specialists and would always recommend that you seek professional advice.