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United Kingdom

UK: Employment status: New guidance

The response confirms that the government will not proceed with any legislative reform around employment status at this stage. It has however published new guidance which the government believes, together with existing case law, will help provide clarity on how to approach employment status issues.

The new guidance consists of:

On a separate but connected topic, the Future of Work review 2022 is expected to produce a written report to guide long term, strategic policy making on the labour market. It would appear that the review will explore key policy questions such as the role of automation and how the “good” flexibility in the labour market and the gig economy can encourage productivity and growth.

Key Action Points for Human Resources and In-house Counsel

It seems that the impact of the pandemic and the growing economic crisis mean that legislative change to employment status tests is not a priority for the government.  In addition, although it recognises that there may be benefits in aligning the frameworks for assessing tax and employment rights, it has decided that now is not the right time to do this.

The government has also updated its calculating the minimum wage guidance, to include a new section on the gig economy and platform-based workers.