Employers relief at Court of Appeal ruling

Employers relief at Court of Appeal ruling
25th Mar 2011

The Court of Appeal has recently ruled that an agency worker who had become integrated into a business was not entitled to the rights of an employee. In a firm move, the CoA ruled:

“In most cases it is quite unrealistic for the worker to provide any satisfactory service to the employer without being integrated into the mainstream business, at least to some degree, and this will inevitably involve control over what is done and, to some extent, the manner in which it is done.”

Being fully integrated into an employer’s business, where you act and look like a permanent employee does not dictate that you are that company’s employee and that protections due to an employee, it follows, may not be entitled to an agency worker, even if that worker has been found by an employment tribunal to be “absorbed” by the employer, www.contractoruk.com reported.

The Appeal judges concluded that it is wrong to assume that just “because someone looks and acts like an employee, it follows that in law he must be an employee.” For example, an agency worker having to apply to a client staff manager before being permitted to take annual leave is “not sufficient to justify the implication of a contract.”

Europeople’s Managing Director John Davison comments:

“Whilst many employers may breathe a sigh of relief at this ruling, it is important to remember that if you employ an agency that has clear contracts with both parties, there is never any doubt in the agency worker’s mind as to their role and responsibilities. Clear contracts are much more cost effective than court cases!”

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