Contracts of Employment

These information sheets have been provided as a guide only and should not be used as substitutes for specialist advice. We try to keep them updated, however, this cannot always be guaranteed.

The following information is not a comprehensive guide. It lists the key points to be considered by someone who is considering employing a personal assistant (PA). The ACAS website, www.acas.org.uk  is also a very good source of information on employment matters. Further help can be obtained from one of our advisors.

Key Points

  • Your employees have a legal right to receive a written statement of employment within two months of starting. People who are self employed, independent contractors and people employed for less than one month do not have this right.
  • Employees who do not receive a written statement of employment can refer their case to an employment tribunal.
  • A contract of employment includes other related documents e.g. a letter of appointment, job description, legal entitlements and issues outlined in the written statement of employment .
  • If a written contract of employment is not provided, a contract of employment is still seen to exist if duties are carried out on a regular basis by an employee even if on a casual basis. In this situation, the actions of both employer and employee are sufficient to create a contract.
  • It is advisable to have a written statement of the contract of employment between employer and employee because it clarifies the duties and expectations of both parties. It could outline ‘house rules' and conditions of employment e.g. holiday pay, public holidays, accrued holiday pay on the termination of employment, sick pay, Statutory Sick Pay and Statutory Maternity Pay. All this would make it easier to resolve any problems or misunderstandings that may arise.
  • It is sensible for the written statement to be clear as to any aspects of the work which could constitute a potential risk or difficulties arising as a result of your disability and their duties.
  • Changes to a contract of employment must be discussed with and agreed by an employee.  Sample statement of employment – please contact us if you require support to tailor this to your requirements.

Termination of employment

A contract of employment can be ended by mutual agreement or by the employer or employee giving the required notice of termination. However, an employee can appeal to a tribunal if they feel they have been unfairly dismissed. A pre-determined disciplinary procedure should therefore always be followed before dismissal, other than in cases of redundancy. Support is available from an advisor if it is needed.