Guidelines: Working with members of the MJA

By July 7, 2021Public

The Medical Journalists’ Association represents the UK’s leading health and medical journalists — many of whom are available for a range of freelance and consultancy work.

We do not advise on fees and these will vary according to a member’s experience and expertise as well as the services required. 

However our members do expect fair, and prompt, payment for their services — and they do share information on fees and payment issues within the password protected membership pages.

These guidelines provide an overview of what to expect.

  • Our members work via a day rate, or by agreeing a fee for each project. It is helpful if you have a budget, or a clear idea of how many days work you think are involved, in mind. 
  • MJA members should be paid within 30 days of invoicing.
  • If there is any paperwork needed to process payment — for instance, a new supplier form and/or PO number — please provide these at the beginning of the process, not on completion of the work
  • Members who provide media consultancy are often happy to have a quick chat about what might be possible, and some freelancers will work with an agency of comms team in return for an exclusive story — but please do not ask members to provide free advice or feedback
  • Many of our members are sole traders, who are not subject to IR35. Most who operate as limited companies also fall outside the IR35 rules and should not be treated as pay-rolled staff.
  • Fees should be agreed before any work is undertaken. This can be done via an exchange of emails or a more formal contract. 
  • If possible, avoid using standard contracts as most include clauses which are not relevant to sole traders and small companies.
  • Some, but by no means all, our members will have professional indemnity insurance.

Click here to download a PDF of Guidelines: Working with MJA members

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