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Employment status proposals

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Last updated 19th May 2019.

Changes are being considered to bring up-to-date the rules on who is protected by the Equality Act and by other employment rights.

The government’s Good Work Plan (gov.uk) issued in December 2018 proposes numerous changes to employment law. These include reforming the rules on which workers have different kinds of employment rights, eg under the Equality Act. This is particularly important given the growth of the gig economy and zero-hours contacts.

For example, it may become more difficult for employers to avoid liability under the Equality Act by giving workers a right to substitute someone else to do the work.

The current rules are discussed on Employees, workers and beyond.

Matthew Taylor review

The Good Work Plan follows on from the Matthew Taylor review of modern working practices (gov.uk), published in July 2017, which recommended changes to these rules on employment status.

Also in November 2017, two parliamentary select committees published a report and draft Bill aiming to reform the law on gig economy workers: ‘Worker by default’ status proposed in new gig economy Bill (link to personneltoday.com).