"What this recent decision case does is pour yet more spotlight on the complex area of employment status. I recently presented with George Hardy at Waltons Clark Whitehill on the topic as the implications are extensive from a cost and taxation point of view as well as an employment law perspective.
The truth is that these types of case will interest any individual engaged within the gig economy and beyond. It certainly seems to be the case that the category of worker is a fertile middle ground for employment claims, thanks to the uncertainty that these high profile cases encourage. These types of cases will turn on a case by case basis, but it would seem that the policy is clear-
those who think that they have self-employed individuals engaged, but where that individual gives a degree of personal service to the business, they may find themselves failing to comply with statutory rights to paid leave, a 48 hour working week without an opt out agreement in place, rest breaks or National Minimum Wage.
An audit of the business from an employment law perspective could prove very helpful in the event that there is any uncertainty in this area."
A plumber has won a legal battle for working rights in the latest significant court ruling over freelance operations in the modern workplace. Gary Smith wanted to reduce his working days at Pimlico Plumbers following a heart attack. The Court of Appeal agreed with a tribunal that said he was entitled to basic workers' rights although he was technically self-employed. The decision is the latest to side with workers in a flexible workforce. This is the highest court to consider such a case and the ruling will now be closely read by others with similar disputes, many of whom will work for businesses in the so-called "gig" economy such as Uber drivers.