What are the different types of employment status?

Last updated: 05 Mar 2020

There are three different types of employment status. It is often difficult identifying which category a person might fall under.

Individuals undertaking work will either be:

  • employees – with full statutory employment rights
  • workers – with more limited rights, or
  • self-employed or have no employment status – with no statutory rights, but they may have rights under their contract and will also have health and safety protection.

What is my employment status?

Everybody will fall under one of the three employment statuses above. Which status will depend on personal circumstances, but some jobs are more likely to fall under some statuses than others.

Employee

Most probably includes: people in typical forms of employment and apprentices.

May include: freelancers, consultants, sessional workers, zero-hours contracts, interns doing work themselves.

Worker

Most probably includes: freelancers, consultants, sessional workers, zero-hours contracts, interns doing work themselves.

May include: volunteers, work experience (if undertaking work rather than just shadowing)

No employment status

Most probably includes: genuinely self employed, work shadowers, volunteers.

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