Commentary

(c) The basic requirement of a contract – or not?

Division AI Categories of Worker
| Commentary

(c) The basic requirement of a contract – or not?

| Commentary

(c)     The basic requirement of a contract – or not?

What the 'limb (b)' definition has in common with the traditional limb (a) definition of an 'employee' is the requirement for a contract (of sorts). As a general principle, this remains true, so that if the individual in question does not have such a contractual relationship with the putative employer (eg if their relationship is purely based on legislative or other status) the definition will not apply. A good example of this can be seen in the case law on the legal position of foster carers. In Bullock v Norfolk County Council UKEAT/0230/10, (24 January 2011, unreported) the EAT held that because the relationship between a foster carer and the relevant local authority is not contractual, being regulated almost entirely by statute, foster carers are not workers within ERA 1996 s 230. The EAT considered itself bound to reach this conclusion by reference to two decisions of the Court of Appeal on the status of foster carers, W v Essex County Council [1998] 3 All ER 111 and Rowlands v City of Bradford MDC [1999] EWCA Civ 1116 (26 March 1999, unreported), the latter a case holding that foster carers were not 'employees' within the extended definition in the RRA 1976, which also required a relationship governed by contract. The position that foster carers are not workers within the domestic legislation was again reaffirmed by the EAT in National Union of Professional

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