Contractor law


A contractor is someone who is not an employee but rather someone who contracts with a company for a period of time to provide a service. Contractor law encompasses the legal principles that govern their working conditions.

Contractors traditionally earn higher salaries and have more control over the type of work they do compared with employees, but they suffer from not having the same legal protection. For example, a contractor cannot bring a claim for unfair or wrongful dismissal if they are sacked.

Many employers require the services of a contractor rather than taking on a full-time employee, usually because they need temporary expertise.

If you'd like advice on your employment status, and whether you're an employee or a contractor, call us on 0800 1777 162.

How to find out if you're a contractor or an employee

Sometimes the line between an employee and a contractor can become blurred, and the courts and employment tribunals use the following tests to determine which category a person falls into.

The starting point is to look at the contract between the parties; while this is not conclusive, it can help provide answers.

Secondly, they look at the degree of control exercised by the employer. The greater the amount of control the employer has over the person concerned the less likely they are to be a contractor.

'Mutuality of obligation'

Mutuality of obligation is a key factor in determining the status of an employee. This means that once the contractual task is completed, if the employer does not have to continue to use the worker, they are more likely to be a contractor.

Finally, if the worker is using their own equipment, and is taking a financial risk then they are more likely to be an independent contractor. An employee tends to use the employer's equipment, and takes no financial risk.

These factors usually determine whether contractor law is applicable to an employee or not.

You can follow these links if you want to find out more about employment law and contracts.

If you would like to obtain legal advice on contractors then Contact Law can put you in touch with a local employment law solicitor free of charge. So, if you have any questions or would like our help in finding local employment law solicitors please call us on 0800 1777 162 or complete the web-form above.

0800 1777 162
or fill in the form
Our trained advisor contacts you
Your chosen specialist solicitor calls you
Quick enquiry form
Area of law:
What our clients say about us
"This was the first time I've been to court, which was a nerve-racking experience for me. However, I felt very prepared, I understood my case and representation - this was down to you."
Gavin, criminal motoring, Oct 15
"Your service, and the prompt call back from your recommended firm was very good. I would not hesitate to call again or recommend your service."
Ian, employment law, Truro, July 15
"The firm were excellent, could not have been better! They are exactly what I need right now."
Linda, criminal defence, Thames Ditton, Jul 15
"Your contact and service was immediate and utmost professional, 10/10."
TF, conveyancing, Dudley, Jun 15
"I appreciate the service that you provide. I found you to be courteous, efficient and reassuring at a time when my confidence in justice is completely negative."
Patrick, litigation, Pontypridd, Jun 15
"I cannot tell you how much I appreciate the speed of which you came back to me in. If anyone else can benefit from your help like I have done, it would make my day."
Gail M, family law, Potters Bar, Jun 15
"Your assistance was extremely helpful. Particularly to someone who in 40 years of business has never experienced this sort of issue."
TD, commercial litigation, Galashiels, Apr 15
"It is difficult to express the value Contact Law has to someone like me who had very little understanding of the law and how to proceed forward with my case. Thank you for the service you provided."
AE, defamation law, Worthing, Apr 15
"Thank you for the efficient service I received. I was contacted by your solicitor on the same day as my request. Your quick response to my situation made me feel secure."
AN, employment law, London, Apr 15
"Your service was excellent, very fast and informative. I never got the impression of being pressurised at all. The solicitor you recommended was also excellent – very knowledgeable and supportive."
JHD, Motoring law, Liverpool, Apr 15
Contact Law supports the endeavours of STAE and commends all the work they are undertaking to assist in the plight of the Asian Elephant


We use cookies on the Contact Law site to help us improve it.

If you would like to allow our cookies, please click 'Continue' or carry on browsing. For more information on cookies and how to change your settings, click 'More info'.