Re: I am HMRC's target
Disagree some of this:
2. Yes there is something stopping you from claiming benefits from your company, and it's called IR35. Allowing your company to pay any expenses whatsoever is banned if you are working within IR35. All income from a contract is assumed to be personal income and cannot go to your company, and then you pay both employers and employees NI on that personal income (as well as normal income tax). If you want to pay yourself pension, you can only do personal contributions, there is no allowable method of paying employer contributions (despite the change requiring all companies to offer a workplace pension with a minimum 3% employer contribution).
Also, nice benefits like expenses away from home are disallowed under IR35. So if you were an employee and working away from home for 6 months (eg in a hotel mon-fri), you could claim this back from the company you work for, and the company would account for it as an expense. You cannot do that under IR35 (as effectively you don't work for a company, despite being taxed as if you do.)
So overall I agree with the previous posters. You cannot treat contractors as employees for tax purposes, but not for employment rights purposes. One or the other (and I don't particularly care which)