Self-employment is where an individual is providing a business on their own account rather than working for someone else. Where this is genuinely the case the individual will not qualify for any rights that a 'worker' or an 'employee' will have.
However many people who are described as self-employed may actually meet the legal definition of worker or employee and so be entitled to appropriate rights. This is because tribunals will look at the actual contract between the parties not just the way the parties describe the relationship.
The features of true self employment include:
In contrast to this individuals who are said to be self-employed may qualify for worker or employee status where:
The fact that an individual is labelled as self-employed for tax purposes will not completely determine the employment rights they may qualify for as the tax rules are different. However succeeding in an argument that you are an employee may mean that your tax status has to be changed.
Arguing for employment rights if you are self employed
It is open to any self-employed person to argue that they quailfy for worker or employee status when claiming employment rights. However your employer may react negatively so you need to proceed carefully if you are still in work. You will need to:
Further information on staus, rights and negotiating with employers is at: