TAYLOR REVIEW: MISHCON DE REYA LAWYER, WILL WINCH, RESPONDS
Commenting on the Taylor Review, Mishcon de Reya Lawyer Will Winch said:
Many individuals enter the gig economy willingly as a result of the flexibility it offers. A large proportion of the gig economy is made up of those in the creative industry, as well as project managers and administrative staff. They are often well paid. Others, though, struggle to earn the minimum wage through the work they do.
This is a nuanced area, and it would be difficult to make any sweeping changes that would benefit everyone: even if steps are taken to protect the most vulnerable, this may have a knock on effect on those who could lose the flexibility that they value so highly.
The difference between 'dependent contractors' and the existing worker status is that the person supplying the labour may be entitled to offer someone else to do the work for them – this would have disqualified them from worker protection under the old rules. The Report calls on employers to provide workers with a statement on the first day of their employment which sets out their status and rights (extending the current requirement which only applies to employees).
The extent to which the recommendations in the report will be implemented into statute remains to be seen. Before the election, it was likely to have formed the basis of legislation for years to come. However, given the reaction from Labour and the unions, it may only become a 'best practice' guide for employers in the gig economy.
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