Willis and other brokers consider deferring bonuses until the start of the new tax year


Aon is deferring bonus payments until the new tax year for 250 of its highly paid staff to help them avoid paying 50% income tax.

According to The Guardian, other brokers, including Willis, are also considering whether to allow their staff to postpone payments until after 6 April, when the top rate of income tax falls to 45%.

Aon employees who have chosen to defer their 2012 bonuses from March to April will pay 45% income tax instead of 50%, meaning an executive expecting a £200,000 payout will save £10,000 in tax.

A spokesman said: “Qualifying UK employees were given the option of deferring payment of their 2012 bonuses from March to April 2013. Approximately 250 employees, 4% of the UK employee base, elected this option.”

Willis told the paper it was still considering whether to do likewise. “Willis takes this matter very seriously and we are reviewing it,” said a spokesman.

The move by Aon comes just days after investment bank Goldman Sachs was forced to back down on its own plans to defer bonuses.

Bank of England governor Sir Mervyn King called the move “depressing”.