Basic employment rights of each employment status


Each form of employment brings with it different rights—although individuals can expect some similar rights under the Equality Act 2010.

It’s essential for your business to understand the employment laws for each type of employment status.

You can get in touch with us on 0800 028 2420 if you’d like to know what these are straight away. We’re experts on all employment law rights across the UK.

You can also read our in-depth guide, which covers every type of employment status and how it applies to your business.

What is employment status?

It’s the type of work an individual engages in. The various types include:

  • Employees: An individual working under an employment contract.
  • Workers: An individual with a contract or arrangement to work for your business for a reward (financially or for a benefit).
  • The self-employed/contractors: Run a business for themselves. They can be self-employed and in full-time employment simultaneously.
  • Directors: These run limited companies for shareholders. They have different rights to employees, which we cover later in this guide.
  • Office holders: An individual appointed by an organisation, they have political or business-related tasks to complete. They’re not an employee or worker in this role.

Regarding any legal decisions about an individual’s employment status, an employment tribunal will make any decisions on this.

Peninsula offer employment law expertise

When you’re running a business, finding the time to understand every intricate UK law isn’t an option. You simply won’t have the time.

That’s why many small and medium-sized businesses look to outsource their HR and employment law requirements.

Since 1983, we’ve assisted tens of thousands of SMEs with understanding the complexities of employment law.

Contact us and request a call back for any business issues. We’re always happy to help and, for our customers, it’s a 24/7 service.

Employee employment rights

It probably won’t surprise you to learn most people in work across the UK are employees.

Whether they’re full or part-time employees, they’ll work under a contract of employment. In that, you can explain the duties they’ll perform in their job.

Their rights include access to many in-work benefits. These include:

  • Statutory sick pay.
  • Holiday pay.
  • A set amount of holiday days—a minimum of 5.6 weeks.
  • Statutory maternity and paternity leave.
  • Adoption leave and pay.
  • Protection from an unfair dismissal.

Worker employment rights

This is to do with casual worker employment rights—they’re not employees. They still have entitlements, including some statutory rights. They include the minimum wage and holiday time with pay.

You should also take into consideration part-time workers. You must factor in their rights, which may change slightly if they’re on reduced hours (such as with pro-rated holiday entitlements).

If you have agency workers, they’re on a contract with an employment or recruitment business—they’re hired to work for an agency’s clients.

They’re still viewed as workers. And after 12 weeks continuous service you’ll need to provide them with the same employment rights as your own staff—and that includes the likes of National Minimum Wage and holiday pay.

Self-employed employment rights

It’s a form of employment and a tax status. The basic employment rights for self-employed in the UK don’t apply as with workers and employees. Although they do have health & safety legislation to protect them.

However, the self-employed are responsible for paying their tax and National insurance contributions.

That means they must register as self-employed and complete a tax return form.

Need our help?

If you need assistance with any employment law issue, you can get in touch for immediate support: 0800 028 2420.

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