Whilst the terms “employee” and “worker” are often used interchangeably, the reality is that for the purposes of employment law, they are anything but the same. Establishing employment status correctly is essential as the consequences of getting it wrong are substantial.
In UK legislation, an individual doing paid work will either be classified as an employee, a worker or as self-employed. Employment status will determine the rights of the individual and it’s an area of law which can be confusing and complicated to understand. Generally, an employee is entitled to more rights than a worker, however there is a lot of overlap between the two and since April 2020, both are entitled to a Statement of Main Terms from the first day on the job.
Essentially, when deciding on whether an individual is either an employee, a worker or self-employed, we have to apply the three tests of employment:
- Personal Service: whether or not the individual is required to perform the work personally
- Control: How much control you have over how, when and where the work is performed
- Mutuality of Obligation: Are you obligated to give the employee work and are they obligated to accept it.
However, the reality is that there are many factors to consider when attempting to determine employment status and you should seek advice to ensure you are not putting your business at risk.
As there have been several high-profile cases pertaining to employment status, it may well be that new laws will be brought in to help clarify the employment status tests.
About Aspire HR
Headquartered in Cambridge, UK Aspire HR make Human Resources available and affordable to all companies no matter how small. Few businesses can afford a full time HR professional.
Aspire HR is your flexible HR manager; here to help you protect your business, leaving you to concentrate on what you do best – run your business. We help businesses to grow and be profitable, and we look to partner with you to build strong long-standing relationships.
Get in touch with our CIPD accredited HR Consultants today on 01223 855441.