Eligibility for working time rights
Eligibility for working time rights

The following Employment practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Eligibility for working time rights
  • Workers
  • Exclusions
  • Partial exclusions
  • Workers where the characteristics of their work inevitably conflicts with the provisions of the WTR
  • Young workers
  • Transport and mobile workers
  • Air transport workers
  • Trainee doctors
  • Domestic workers
  • More...

IP COMPLETION DAY: 11pm (GMT) on 31 December 2020 marks the end of the Brexit transition/implementation period entered into following the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. At this point in time (referred to in UK law as ‘IP completion day’), key transitional arrangements come to an end and significant changes begin to take effect across the UK’s legal regime. This document contains guidance on subjects impacted by these changes. Before continuing your research, see Practice Note: Brexit and IP completion day—implications for employment lawyers.

This Practice Note examines the criteria that must be fulfilled in order for an individual to benefit from the protection of the Working Time Regulations 1998 (WTR), SI 1998/1833.

The rights given by the WTR apply to most workers, but a number of groups are excluded from some or all of the provisions.


The definition of the term 'worker' within WTR, SI 1998/1833, reg 2(1) is much broader than 'employee'. It means an individual who has entered into or works (or worked) under:

  1. a contract of employment, or

  2. any other contract (which may be express or implied and, if it is express, may be oral or in writing) under which the individual undertakes to do or perform personally any work or services for another party to the contract whose status is not by virtue of the contract that of a client or customer

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