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UKSolicitorJA
UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 4312
Experience:  English solicitor with over 12 years experience
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To whom it may concern,I am a South African, working and

Customer Question

To whom it may concern,

I am a South African, working and residing in the UK on my ancestral visa.
On arriving in the UK, I started working for a care agency, who placed me with clients as a live-in carer, however after 3 months of working for the agency, I decided to return to my previous agency who I had worked for in 2008.

The clients that I currently work for, did not want me to leave and asked me to stay on if they pay the wages I would be earning with the agency, however after a week they gave me a contract to sign that I am self-employed and had to pay my own taxes and National Insurance.


I had no idea what this meant at the time, until I started to apply for visas etc, only then I realised what it meant to be self-employed. I was asked for my accountants telephone number, registration of my business name etc, all because of the word self-employed. I worked only for these clients 7 days a week 24 hours a day, did not have any other income or work.

I have since then registered for my national insurance number, and would like to know if I am self-employed. About three weeks ago I was informed by telephone that they are putting me on to an hourly rate, and that I will no longer get my full wages, they cut it more than half, I do not get paid overtime even though I work at night, they do use other agencies, when I am off, that get paid overtime, and a agency rate that is more than my hourly rate.

During the 15 months I have worked here I was not paid any additional perks, no holiday pay or bonusses, no sick leave, no days off, it was all unpaid. I recently moved into my own apartment with a friend, with my employers blessings, I travell everyday 4 times daily to attend to my duties, nothing has changed except that I do not live in anymore. My work load is still the same as before, and yet my wages has just been changed without written consent. My original contract states that I am sel-employed and that I have to give one months notice either way.

I am very traumatised by all of this, and being in a country that I do not fully know what the employment laws are all about. I honestly do not want to get into trouble with the tax man as it would only be to my detrimined apply for my British passport.

I also feel that I have been used in many ways and not happy about my current situation.

Iwould appreciate it if anyone could assist and advise me on how to go about getting legal advice, on this matter.

Thank you
Kind regards
Yvonne
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Immigration Law
Expert:  UKSolicitorJA replied 3 years ago.
Hello,

Sorry to hear about your problems.

Your clients whom you currently work seem to have treated you unfairly and possibly in breach of the law.

Whether or not you are self employed or employed is a matter of law that can only be conclusively determined by the courts. It does not matter that you are called a self employee, the courts will look at the actual relationship to see whether it is disguised employment or genuine self employment.

I would suggest that you use this tool to give you a good idea whether or not you are an employee or self employed: http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/calcs/esi.htm

If you are an employee, you will have rights to annual leave, protection from working excess hours, protection from unfair dismissal, right to minimum wage etc.

If you are an employee, you may contact ACAS to try and assist you further in regularing your status with your employer and the tax man: http://www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=1461

If you are self employed, then you should register as such with the tax man and seek advice on payment of any unpaid taxes and penalties so that your immigration status is not jeopardised. See here for more information:

www.hmrc.gov.uk/selfemployed/

Hope this helps
UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 4312
Experience: English solicitor with over 12 years experience
UKSolicitorJA and other Immigration Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hello,


 


Thank you for the reply to my questions.


 


However I have have previously used this tool, http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/calcs/esi.htm and it indicates that I am an employee, and not self-employed.I have phoned gov uk the tax offices, explaining that I have taken this test online and that I have signed this measly contract. They were certainly not sympathetic towards me or my problem and told me without even thinking that I am self-employed. I am so confused at present, and this has really affected my life in many ways.


 


I am wanting to know if I signed this straight forward contract, that the client gave me.... will it count against me as being self-employed/ employed.


 


May the client just change my salary from £2,400.00 pm ($600) per week, on the telephone to an hourly rate of £10.00 and hour without any formal notice to prepare myself mentally and financially?



I am now only earning around £400.00 to £500.00 a month. This has put me into financially difficulty and struggling to meet my commitments monthly. Although they have changed my salary, I am still performing the same duties, as they see me as a fast worker and know that I get the job done in less time than other employees from the agencies.



I am not somebody that can write proper letters to acas, is there somebody that could assist me with this. Please could you refer or assist me on how to go about getting either a lawyer to assist me in this matter or somebody that will help draft my letters or act on my behalf.


 


Thank you


 


Kind regards


Yvonne


 


 


 





Expert:  UKSolicitorJA replied 3 years ago.

Thank you,

You may use the Law Society's find a solicitor search facility to find a solicitor who is able to assist you:

 

http://solicitors.lawsociety.org.uk/



It does not matter what contract you have signed, if the tool is showing employment status, then it is very likely that you are an employee.

You may call ACAS and see what they have to say first, you do not need to write letters to them.

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