6 new laws coming in 2022 that could affect you

·4-min read
Business woman using calculator and signing cheque, work on laptop computer at office. Payment and payroll concept.
People are likely to face higher taxes and bills next year. (PA)

The government is introducing dozens of new pieces of legislation in 2022 that will change everyone's day-to-day life in some form or another.

We've compiled a list of some of the biggest changes to legislation happening next year. Here's what you can expect.

National insurance

The biggest change most people will notice is National Insurance being raised by 1.25 percentage points starting in the new financial year.

The tax hike was announced in September and broke the Conservative 2019 manifesto pledge not to raise taxes.

The government justified the rise by saying no one could have predicted the pandemic.

It is expected the increase will generate £12bn for the economy per year, which the government says will be spent on health and social care.

Watch: Angela Rayner slams increase in National Insurance as a 'slap in the face' to key workers

Rates of National Insurance range from 5.88% for those on the lowest income to 9.7% for top earners.

The change will see the bands rise to 6.78% and 10.51%.

According to analysts at Hargreaves Lansdown, in practical terms, for someone earning £20,000 a year, they’ll pay £1,382 National Insurance a year - up £130 from their current annual National Insurance bill.

Someone earning £30,000 a year will pay £2,707, up £255 and someone earning £50,000 a year £5,357 up £505.

From 2023, the rise will be separated out into a new tax which will apply to all people including the over 65s who do not pay National Insurance.

The government also raised the amount of National Insurance contributions businesses must make to their employees by 1.25% effectively making it a 2.5% tax rise as many firms will offset the rise by not raising wages.

Some companies have warned the rise will put them off hiring.

Dividend taxes were also raised by 1.25%

It is the biggest UK tax increase for 28 years.

Minimum wage

The National Living Wage - or the minimum wage for people aged over 23 - will be raised from £8.91 to £9.50 from April.

All other younger age groups will also see a minimum wage rise.

The increase was one of the flagship policies of Sunak's October budget, alongside the Universal Credit taper changes that came into effect in November.

Energy price cap

Households have suffered from soaring energy bills recently after the price of gas increased more than 500%, forcing almost all of the smaller energy suppliers out of business.

The government has announced no support for struggling households and from April the price cap on energy bills is expected to rise to around £1,660 from £1,277.

Plastics

From April next year, all businesses and customers will need to pay tax on any plastic packaging they buy that doesn’t contain at least 30% recycled plastic.

Obesity

A new government obesity strategy will become law in October 2022 restricting the advertising of foods and drinks high in fat, sugar and salt.

Retailers will be banned from offering "buy one get one free" or "3 for 2" deals on unhealthy foods.

Free refills of sugary drinks like lemonade will also be banned in restaurants.

Corporation Tax

From the new financial year, corporation tax will rise to 19% and will increase further in 2023 to 25%.

Driving

Mobile phone use while driving is being tightened. At the moment, people face a £200 fine for communicating with their phone while driving but a loophole means they cannot be charged if taking a photo or a recording.

In 2022 this loophole will be closed, meaning any phone use while behind the wheel will be subject to a fine.

Close-up of a car parked on a hill, with the tire turned into the curb to stop  the car from rolling forward.
Councils will gain the power to fine people who park on curbs next year. (Getty)

The government is also giving councils to power to outlaw parking on curbs with on-the-spot £70 fines.

The practice, which is already illegal in London, has long been contentious with disabled people saying cars on curbs can block their access to pavements but some road users and large vehicle drivers saying if all cars were parked fully on thin roads then it would be inaccessible to drive down.

There will also be a new hierarchy on the roads, putting the most vulnerable (cyclists and pedestrians) at the top with car users and lorry drivers at the bottom.

The hierarchy will put the onus on the person able to do the most harm to do the most to protect people on the roads.

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