Zero-Hours contracts are used in circumstances where an employee is contractually obliged to be available to work for an employer in a week for:

  • a certain number of hours; or
  • as and when the employer requires them to do so; or
  • both a certain number of hours and otherwise as and when the employer requires them to do so.

Employees on zero-hours contracts are protected by the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997 but this does not apply to casual employment. What differentiates Zero-Hours contracts from regular casual workers contracts is that with Zero-Hours contracts the employee is entitled to receive remuneration if they do not work for the employer at all in a week or if they are only required to work less than the percentage of hours they are required to make themselves available for, and this percentage is less than 15 hours.