Bishop of Oxford asks about employment rights in the gig economy

On 10th November the Bishop of Oxford received written answers to three questions, on employment conditions in the gig economy:

The Lord Bishop of Oxford: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of (1) the impact, and (2) the effectiveness, of requiring employers in the gig economy to provide workers and contractors with a written statement of their core terms of employment. [HL9569]

Lord Callanan: In response to the Taylor Review, the Government recognised that there was a significant lack of awareness among individuals and employers about applicable rights and responsibilities in non-standard contracts. We therefore amended legislation so that the Employment Rights Act 1996 entitles both employees and workers to receive a written statement of employment particulars that sets out the position regarding remuneration and hours of work etc.

It is now a statutory right to receive a written statement setting out the main particulars of their employment and the employer must provide the principal statement on the first day of employment and the wider written statement within 2 months of the start of employment.

Though the Government regularly takes views from businesses, business groups, and unions on the impact and effectiveness of employment rights legislation, we do not currently have plans to review the impact or implementation of this specific requirement.


The Lord Bishop of Oxford: To ask Her Majesty’s Government how they are (1) monitoring, and (2) enforcing, the requirement to provide all workers and contractors in the gig economy with a written statement of their core terms of employment. [HL9568]

The Lord Bishop of Oxford: To ask Her Majesty’s Government how many companies have been subject to sanctions or enforcement action for failing to provide workers and contractors in the gig economy with a written statement of their core terms of employment in (1) 2019, and (2) 2020. [HL9570]

Lord Callanan: Since 6 April 2020, it is now a statutory right for workers to receive a written statement setting out the main particulars of their employment. The employer must provide the principal statement on the first day of employment and the wider written statement within 2 months of the start of employment and failure of an employer to provide one could risk legal action. If an individual has not been provided a written statement, individuals must first informally raise the issue with their employer. If individuals still do not receive one, they can raise a formal grievance.

Enforcement of this right is carried out in the Employment Tribunal system whereby employees who do not receive a written statement, or who believe it to be inaccurate or incomplete, may refer the matter to an employment tribunal. Tribunals can then clarify what particulars should have been provided to employees. The particulars clarified in this way can be used as evidence in any claim arising from breaches of the employee’s terms and conditions.

The following table shows the number of claims the Employment Tribunals have received in relation to ‘Written Statement of terms and conditions.’ This is not broken down by economic sector nor does it show the outcomes of the claims. Further information on this breakdown can be accessed via the GOV.UK website.

Financial Year Quarter Type of Jurisdiction Complaint
Written statement of terms and conditions
2019/20 Q1 352
Q2 327
Q3 295
Q4r 313
2020/21 Q1 203

r = figures have been revised as part of an annual reconciliation exercise