So when is someone who isn't an employee really an employee?

No it's not a riddle – it's a problem I see time and time again with many small business owners.

You may be one of them?

If you have engaged someone in your business and thought “I don't want the hassle of employing someone, I'll take on my assistant as a freelancer/associate/consultant/contractor etc” – then you need to pay close attention.

Regardless of what you label the working relationship, the law and HMRC look behind that to the true nature of the relationship.

And if it turns out that your ‘freelancer' (or whatever you have called them) is actually an employee, then you will be liable for backdated employer tax and penalties and risk employment related claims including unfair dismissal and discrimination.

So you need to get it right.

Employee or freelancer

If you click on the below link, you can read my Employment Status Checklist and satisfy yourself whether your assistant is truly self-employed or is actually your employee.

Click here to get your Employment Status Checklist.

If it turns out they are actually an employee, get in touch with me through the Contact Us page so that we can work out your best next steps.

And of course, do keep the Checklist for future reference for when you are taking people on to help you in the future.

Note that this checklist also applies to people like your cleaners and others who may have a number of jobs – just because they work for 5 people doesn't mean they are self-employed, it may mean they have 5 part-time jobs!

I hope it serves you well!

© Suzanne Dibble 2014

Disclaimer:   The information contained above is based on English law only and is provided for information purposes only. The contents of this article are not intended to amount to advice and you should not rely on any of the contents of this article. Professional advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from taking any action as a result of the above contents. Suzanne disclaims all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on any of the contents of this article.

Employee or freelancer