Gary Smith, the plumber

A worker Gary Smith has won a legal battle for employment rights, that may have implications for thousands of employees across Britain’s booming gig economy.

The Court  ruling

The Court of Appeal ruled that Gary Smith, who worked for Pimlico Plumbers for six years till 2011, was entitled to fundamental rights such as holiday and sick pay, although he was technically self-employed.

Mr. Gary Smith claimed he was laid-off following a heart attack and sued Pimlico for sick pay.

The case is the latest of several that have scrutinised the connection between freelance contractors and firms. Self-employed, employees such as those that work for Uber, Deliveroo, and Hermes. Also, different gig economy jobs might be entitled to sick pay and other benefits once the ruling.

Highest UK court to date to contemplate such a case and will mean larger protections for thousands of freelance, contractors operating job-to-job with petite security and limited employment rights.

The number of gig economy jobs has surged in recent years however campaigners have same it leaves several with no guarantee of earnings and no protection if they can not work. In some cases, workers claim they have been paid but minimum wage.

Natalie Razeen At Russell-Cooke

“Self-employment was once seen as a sign of getting successfully established oneself and of finally having the ability to pursue one’s ambitions on one’s own terms.

“However, the advent of the ‘gig’ economy has meant that a lot of of these now classified as freelance don’t seem to be essentially ‘living the dream’

In fact it may be quite the alternative, as the truly freelance won’t relish basic rights like the correct to not suffer discrimination. They may so notice it tough to believe the companies they contract with providing flexibility once it’s required.”

Jonathan Chamberlain, partner at the law firm Gowling WLG,

said the ruling was the latest to look at business models “which obtain to manage individuals as if they were workers however pay them as if they weren’t.Once again, the so-called ‘self-employed’ have been found to be employees,

He judgment is a “wake-up need employers reliant on freelance contractors as AN integral a part of their businesses,” according to Naeema Choudry, the partner at Eversheds Sutherland. Judges warned that the ruling would not necessarily apply to any or all staff in similar positions.

“Although employment lawyers will inevitably be interested in this case – the question of when a relationship is genuinely casual being a very live one at present – they should be careful about trying to draw any very general conclusions from it,” said Lord Justice Underhill.

The Court of Appeal’s ruling comes just days once the TUC revealed a critical report warning that British employees face “cut-rate, bottom-of-the-league protections” after Brexit, with more zero-hours contracts and fewer guarantees over vacation and equal pay.

The number of staff while not secure hours or basic employment rights has up by over 660,000 in the past five years, the have a look at discovered.

In October, a London employment tribunal dominated that Uber drivers are entitled to receive the national minimum salary and holiday pay as a result of they are employees, not self-employed. The court rejected Uber’s argument that the drivers do not work for Uber, but merely use its technology.





  • Carl 2 years ago

    The idea of self-employment is that you simply are free from the management of an employer. Pimlico exerts management over their employees

  • Keith Norman 2 years ago

    Is he now going to pay the higher rate of national insurance that he ought to have paid if he was an employee?

  • Winston Smith 2 years ago

    This Uber or Hermes.

    This case the plumber has enjoyed the great advantages of self-employment – running his own business – for years. When he has fallen on trickier times, he has determined it would be better to be a worker (and gain advantages like SSP).

    He had VAT and schedule D tax breaks as a self-employed person however currently the tax remunerator ought to stump up SSP.

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