Why there is a tax on neurodiverse people?


In today’s interconnected world, financial well-being is a critical component of overall life satisfaction. However, a significant portion of the neurodiverse population faces unique challenges when it comes to managing their finances, contributing to what we call the “neurodiversity tax.” At Nordens, we are committed to addressing this issue head-on, recognising the importance of inclusive financial journeys for everyone.

Neurodiverse Individuals and Financial Confidence

A recent study conducted by consultancy Newton sheds light on the financial challenges faced by neurodiverse individuals. Shockingly, over a quarter (27%) of neurodiverse people admit to a lack of confidence in managing their money, a stark contrast to the 18% reported by neurotypical individuals. This lack of confidence is particularly pronounced among those with ADHD (31%) and autism (30%).

Managing debt is another significant hurdle, with just 15% of neurodiverse individuals reporting being debt-free compared to 39% of neurotypicals. Overdrafts, utility arrears, and pay day loans are unfortunately common, creating a financial burden that exacerbates the challenges faced by neurodiverse individuals.

Why This Is A Barrier to Inclusion

The journey towards financial stability is riddled with obstacles for neurodiverse individuals. Despite efforts to secure credit cards and overdrafts, a significant percentage face challenges in completing these applications. A staggering 57% gave up on credit card applications, and 36% abandoned attempts to set up an overdraft. This not only highlights a lack of financial confidence but also underscores the need for more inclusive and supportive financial services.

Moreover, 21% of neurodiverse respondents admitted to delaying essential purchases due to a lack of understanding or anxiety in completing the process. A further 19% chose to forgo buying the product altogether. This reluctance is a clear signal that our financial systems are failing a substantial portion of our population.

Raising Awareness and Taking Action

It’s clear that there is a huge need for financial service firms to step up and take action. In anticipation of the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) Consumer Duty mandate, set to take effect in July, the call is clear: financial organisations must invest in improving for neurodiverse individuals.

At Nordens, we are not just advocating for change; we are actively contributing to the solution. That’s why we are excited to share that we will be creating a revolutionary new service to support neurodivergent business owners in overcoming unique day-to-day challenges.

Developed in partnership with Ellice Whyte, CEO of Mindset BPS and accredited business psychologist, the initiative addresses a significant void in financial management support for those with neurodivergence’s such as ADHD, Autism, Dyslexia and others. The comprehensive service offering will include debt recovery, cash flow management, access to work applications support, impulse control, team management, and much more.

“At Nordens, we’re passionately dedicated to ensuring financial services are accessible and usable for all individuals”, said Mitch Hahn, CEO of Nordens. “By collaborating with Mindset BPS, we can guarantee our clients will receive personalised solutions created by someone who understands their unique perspective. This partnership helps to underscore our commitment to inclusivity in business.”

To further solidify this commitment, we will be carrying out organisation-wide training in neurodiversity with a Continuous Professional Development (CPD) certification for all our team members. Furthermore, the leadership team will regularly collaborate with Ellice on the development of communication methods that cater to the specific needs of neurodivergent business owners.

The neurodiversity tax is not just a financial burden; it is a societal challenge that demands immediate attention. By recognising the needs of neurodiverse individuals and actively working towards more inclusive financial services, we can create a society where everyone has equal opportunities for financial success. This new service embodies our innovative approach to accountancy and demonstrates our desire to foster an inclusive environment that values neurodivergent talent in the business world.

By leveraging a wealth of knowledge in accountancy and a deep understanding of neurodivergent challenges, we are set to pave a new path towards inclusion in the industry. With the advent of this new service, we want to send a signal to neurodivergent business owners that they are valued, understood, and, most importantly, supported.

Our message to the financial services sector is clear: the time for change is now. By prioritising the creation of better services all round, we can eradicate the silent tax imposed on the neurodiverse community.

At Nordens, we stand committed to leading the way and inspiring others to join us on this journey towards a more equitable and inclusive financial landscape. If you’re a neurodiverse business owner and want to seek advice from an accountant and advisor who truly gets it, get in touch today.

Neurodiversity Tax FAQs

What is the “neurodiversity tax”?

The “neurodiversity tax” refers to the additional challenges neurodiverse individuals face in managing their finances, leading to disparities in financial well-being compared to neurotypical individuals.

What are some key financial challenges faced by neurodiverse individuals?

Neurodiverse individuals often experience a lack of confidence in managing money, higher levels of debt, and difficulties in accessing financial services like credit cards and overdrafts. These challenges contribute to financial insecurity and hinder their path to stability.

How can Nordens help to address the financial challenges of neurodiverse individuals?

Nordens is developing a new service in collaboration with experts to provide comprehensive support tailored to neurodivergent individuals’ unique needs. This service will include debt recovery, cash flow management, access to work applications support, impulse control, and team management.

How can neurodiverse business owners benefit from Nordens help?

Neurodiverse business owners can benefit from Nordens’ personalized solutions tailored to their unique needs, leveraging Nordens’ expertise in accountancy and understanding of neurodivergent challenges. By seeking advice from Nordens, neurodiverse business owners can receive support from professionals who truly understand their perspective.