BEIS leads on cross government employment status consultation

08 February 2018

The consultation on employment status will run until the 1 June 2018.

BEIS recognise that ‘any work taken forward as a result of this consultation on employment status will impact on other government policies. For example, employment status – or the concept of employee, worker and self-employed – is relevant in determining entitlement to social benefits, such as Universal Credit; and entitlement to Statutory Payments and Automatic Enrolment for pensions. We will be working across government departments to understand and mitigate any potential impacts where appropriate and ensure clarity and alignment across policies are achieved.’

This is a significant paper that look at an area that is complex in nature and in application, for a variety of reasons ‘although the review originally acknowledged that the current employment status framework works reasonably well for most people’.

It has no less than 64 questions and looks to pick up on the Taylor review recommendations that:

  • Government should replace their minimalistic approach to legislation with a clearer outline of the tests for employment status, setting out the key principles in primary legislation, and using secondary legislation and guidance to provide more detail

  • Government should retain the current three-tier approach to employment status as it remains relevant in the modern labour market, but rename as ‘dependent contractors’ the category of people who are eligible for worker rights but are not employees

  • In developing the test for the new ‘dependent contractor’ status, control should be of greater importance, with less emphasis placed on the requirement to perform work personally

  • In developing the new ‘dependent contractor’ test, renewed effort should be made to align the employment status framework with the tax status framework to ensure that differences between the two systems are reduced to an absolute minimum


CIPP comments:

The CIPP policy and research team will be publishing a survey and running a roundtable to gather your views, experiences and responses to the proposals put forward in this paper and to the questions being asked. Further details will be forthcoming through news and in the policy hub but in advance of that expressions of interest are welcomed to [email protected]. Please write Employment Status in the subject line of your email.

Thank you