Agency Worker Regulations

The Agency Worker Regulations came into force on October 1, 2011, introducing a right for agency workers to be given the same basic working and employment conditions as if they had been recruited by the firm that hires them.  The regulations:

•Apply to individuals who are supplied by a temporary work agency to work under the supervision of the hirer. 
•Give the same rights in relation to pay, duration of working time, length of night shift work, rest periods and rest breaks and entitlement to annual leave as a direct employee of the firm – but only after 12 weeks continuous service.
•Day one benefits include access to the hirer’s canteen facilities, childcare facilities, transport services and information about vacancies.
•But no pension rights or entitlement to sick pay, maternity, paternity or adoption pay or to redundancy or other payments if employment is terminated.
•Agency workers have continuity of service provided they are working for the hirer in the same role and have not had a break of more than six weeks.
•Sickness absence of up to 28 weeks will not break continuity.
•Maternity and paternity leave count towards the 12 week continuity threshold.
•Time spent in an assignment before October 1 does not count.
•The employment status of agency workers is not changed. 
•Agency workers will not be entitled to redundancy pay, or to not be unfairly dismissed, unless the reason they are dismissed is because they tried to enforce their rights under the regulations.  
•Right to ask agency to provide information about the hirer’s basic working and employment conditions.
•If an agency worker does not receive equal treatment they can pursue a claim in the employment tribunal.


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