Gig economy

The “gig economy” refers to a trend away from traditional employment models towards the use of freelance contractors to fulfil short-term projects or “gigs”. It is becoming increasingly prevalent with the advent of technologies that allow freelancers to bid for or otherwise engage clients on a piecemeal basis. Uber, Airbnb and Upwork are all examples of disruptive technologies that are putting clients in touch with service providers in real-time online marketplaces. These pages cover the “Uberisation” of the economy and the employment status of so-called “gig workers”.

From ‘forgotten’ to ‘key’ workers: protecting the precariously employed

29 May 2020

While the Covid-19 crisis is a worrying and uncertain time for all of us, it brings into sharp focus some...

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TUC calls for ‘National Recovery Council’ to protect jobs and pay

20 May 2020

The TUC has called for the government to form a National Recovery Council to help the economy heal from the...

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Gig workers’ lives at risk by ‘failure to adopt EU health and safety law‘

12 May 2020

A union that represents gig economy workers is taking legal action against the government for its alleged failure to ensure...

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California sues Uber and Lyft over driver benefits

6 May 2020

The state of California is suing the ride-hailing technology companies Uber and Lyft for failing to provide benefits and protections...

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Courier deliver driver

European court issues worker status clarification in Yodel case

1 May 2020

The European Court of Justice has provided some clarification around how ‘worker’ status is defined under EU law, but has...

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House of Lords: IR35 ‘riddled with problems’

27 Apr 2020

The IR35 rules are ’riddled with problems, unfairnesses, and unintended consequences’, according to a House of Lords committee.

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House of Lords committee reveals IR35 concerns

22 Apr 2020

The House of Lords committee looking at the proposed extension of IR35 regulations to the private sector has written to...

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What will happen to employment status and the Good Work Plan?

30 Mar 2020

Against the background of the coronavirus crisis, the changes coming in on 6 April and the proposed Employment Bill continue to narrow the gap between the status and rights of workers and employee.

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Bolt driver to bring employment status case

16 Mar 2020

A driver is bringing an employment status case against taxi-hailing company Bolt after he was expelled from its platform for...

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Uber drivers in France are employees

6 Mar 2020

Uber drivers in France are employees and not self-employed, the country’s highest court has confirmed.
The landmark ruling, which confirms...

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IR35: Surely blanket bans are not the answer?

3 Mar 2020

Rather than run the risk of being caught out by the extension of off-payroll working rules to the private sector,...

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Hospital maintenance

Statutory sick pay could stymie Covid-19 response

2 Mar 2020

Health workers on statutory sick pay face difficult decision if they exhibit coronavirus symptoms, while gig economy workers also may face dilemma.

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Lords launches IR35 inquiry as freelancer confidence ‘plummets’

6 Feb 2020

A House of Lords select committee is to scrutinise the extension of IR35 rules to the private sector, just two...

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One in three employees say their job is ‘low quality’

4 Feb 2020

Research published today shows that 36% of UK employees report having a “low-quality” job.
Analysis of the Household Longitudinal Study...

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Gig economy ‘like quicksand’ and workers unable to develop skills

29 Jan 2020

Gig workers are often “trapped” in insecure work because long hours, financial insecurity and piecemeal work mean they are often...

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