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The Rising Preference for Freelancers Over Regular Employees: Unveiling the Reasons

In the ever-evolving landscape of business, an intriguing phenomenon is taking shape. Employers are increasingly favoring the engagement of freelancers over conventional employees, and this shift is often accompanied by a noticeable aversion to establishing traditional employment contracts. But what are the underlying reasons for this paradigm shift?

Economic Prudence:

The primary impetus behind this trend lies in the realm of cost-effectiveness. The employment of regular staff entails a significant financial burden on employers, with obligations extending to the coverage of four substantial insurances, amounting to approximately 10-12% of the taxable payroll. In contrast, freelancers typically shoulder the responsibilities of their own tax obligations, insurance, and additional expenditures. This disparity allows employers to substantially trim down their overheads and operational expenses, rendering the choice of freelancers a more economically viable one.

Freelancers, in their interactions with employers, possess the latitude to negotiate these particulars. They may propose involvement in the National Pension and National Health Insurance schemes, evenly splitting the costs with their employers. However, in the event of employer refusal or neglect, freelancers still retain the option to pursue a regional enrollment plan (지역가입) for national pension and health insurance, albeit with full responsibility for covering the entirety of the premium.

For those freelancers who might contemplate the prospect of enrollment in the National Pension or National Health Insurance with a wary eye due to the associated costs, pause for a moment before reaching a hasty conclusion. As a foreign national, you stand entitled to a full refund of your National Pension contributions upon departing the country, while only bearing 50% of the premium during your tenure of employment in Korea. Furthermore, you can avail yourself of discounted rates for endoscopic examinations, such as gastroscopy and colonoscopy, at various medical facilities. Hence, it would be judicious to take these advantages into account before arriving at any decisions.

Fiscal Advantages:

Freelancers who make contributions to the National Pension can also relish the benefits of tax rebates. These rebates can amount to a minimum of 6% annually, potentially soaring to more than 24% effectively, contingent upon their tax bracket. These rebates are typically disbursed once a year, with the disbursement cycle culminating in May. Additionally, freelancers possess the opportunity to assert a lump-sum withdrawal when they leave the country, although the feasibility of this endeavor hinges on your nationality. For comprehensive details, freelancers can contact the relevant authorities via the number "1345."

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Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: Why do employers increasingly favor hiring freelancers over regular employees?

A: The primary rationale lies in cost savings. Employers can minimize expenditures associated with hiring regular employees, such as insurance and taxes, as freelancers typically manage these responsibilities independently.

Q: Can freelancers participate in the National Pension and National Health Insurance programs?

A: Indeed, freelancers have the option to negotiate participation in these schemes with their employers, with the associated costs being evenly divided. In cases where employers decline, freelancers retain the option to apply for a regional enrollment plan and cover the full premium themselves. Moreover, the national pension contribution can be deducted from your annual income to facilitate tax rebates.

Q: Can freelancers obtain tax rebates?

A: Yes, freelancers who contribute to the National Pension can receive tax rebates, with a minimum annual return of 6%, potentially reaching up to 24% or more based on their tax bracket.

Q: Can freelancers request a lump-sum withdrawal upon leaving Korea?

A: Absolutely, freelancers can apply for a lump-sum withdrawal when departing the country. However, eligibility for this option is contingent upon their nationality, and freelancers are advised to consult the relevant authorities for detailed information.

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