A practical post this week on invoicing. Most professional jobs and venues will require an invoice before they pay you, but it can be hard unless you have been told to know what you need to include to get your money. So here to help are some general checklist points:
1. You need to put your name at the top of your invoice and your current address along with the date you are sending the document - which is best sent as a Word Doc or PDF.
2. You also need to include what the event was, the date, the job that you actually did and the agreed fee.
3. Tax Declarations - this is very important, you need to state that you understand that you are being paid freelance (which is generally the case as a burlesque performer) and are therefore responsible for your own tax and national insurance contributions. You may wish to include your UTR or NI number on your invoice too.
4. If you have already been paid for the gig (i.e cash on the night) then you should note this on the invoice with words such as ‘Funds Received in Cash (Date)’
5. Otherwise state how you are happy to receive the funds - usually by BACs in which case you need to include your bank details.
6. Some people include the payment terms i.e ‘Payment Due within 30 days’ on their invoices. In my opinion this can be useful when invoicing larger companies or agencies so if they are late you have a reason to approach them. 30 days is a pretty standard and reasonable length of time, unless you have previously agreed a shorter payment cycle I’d avoid writing things like ‘Payment due within 3 days’.
7. Check where you need to send your invoice to - it may not be to the person that booked you especially at a larger venue who usually have their own finance contact.
If you are not sure about the invoicing requirements of the people you are performing for then feel free to ask, they really shouldn’t mind and it’s in their interest to receive a document fit for their accounting. For full information HMRC is a good source of guidance and also can help you with becoming Self Employed which you need to do if you are being paid for gigs freelance: http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/sa/self-emp.htm