The Taylor Review, issued last July triggered a number of requests for consultation responses since the turn of the year. The IIM has responded to three of these. The original review, entitled “Good Work: the Taylor Review of Modern Working Practices” covered various elements of working practice and is regarded as a seminal piece of work by the government. Several threads of government legislation are potentially impacted by this wide-ranging report written by Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the Royal Society of Arts. The government produced its working paper response; and it is here that they identify the various threads of legislative impact they wish to update to take account of modern working practices.
The Association of Recruitment Consultancies (ARC) produced a succinct summary of the four consultation documents which are focused on the following proposals:
- improving transparency of information provided to workers in relation to pay rates and those responsible for paying
- the remit of EAS to be extended to umbrella companies and other intermediaries
- repeal of Swedish Derogation
- EAS to become responsible for AWR compliance
- Introducing clearer and more detailed legislation for tests of employment status
- renaming those who are currently classified as workers, i.e. those entitled to worker rights but who are not employees, as dependent contractors
- control be regarded as a more important factor in determining status rather than requirement to provide services personally
- employment status in relation to rights to be more closely related to employment status for tax purposes
- HMRC to be responsible for enforcing core rights e.g. minimum wage, sick pay, holiday pay for low paid workers
- workers to be able to apply for authoritative decision on status without incurring a fee at preliminary hearing
- burden on proof to be placed on employer where status is in dispute
- simplifying enforcement procedure for Employment Tribunal awards
- naming and shaming employers who do not pay Employment Tribunal awards
- aggravated awards against employers who have already lost a status claim on similar facts
- uplifts in awards were employers commit further breaches against workers with similar arrangements
- rights to written statement of particulars of employment be extended to workers and apply from day one
- improving awareness and ability to enforce rights to written statement
- increasing from one week to one month gap in service for the relevant period in which continuous service is maintained
- increasing holiday pay reference period to a 52 from the current 12 week period
- right to request a stable contract (e.g. direct employment by hirer, fixed hours)
Building on its history of public consultation responses, the IIM has produced the following documentation for the government’s consideration.
In essence, we are making the point that all interims have no desire to be treated in any way as employees, workers or any other category of engaged individual that attracts any form of employment protection rights. We are in business on our own behalf and operate on a business to business basis when securing a supplier contract from the client.
You will see that we offer a questionnaire solution to the government to be able to identify who, on the spectrum of ‘freelance’ workers, constitutes someone clearly working outside IR35 for tax purposes based on the premise of being in business on one’s own account.
This questionnaire will be placed in the members only area on the website shortly, along with a marking scheme and an indication of how to judge whether your situation can be properly considered to be outside, or within, IR35. This is based on an understanding of current court rulings covering the salient features that HMRC and BEIS periodically change their minds about, causing confusion over interpretation.