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  • FIRST POST
    • csnann
    • By csnann 3rd Oct 17, 10:29 AM
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    csnann
    Can Someone on UC Be Forced To Be Self Employed?
    • #1
    • 3rd Oct 17, 10:29 AM
    Can Someone on UC Be Forced To Be Self Employed? 3rd Oct 17 at 10:29 AM
    The Jobcentre has sent me for an interview for a part-time supermarket sampling job offered by REL Field Marketing, but according to the T&Cs on their website, they don't actually employ you - you have to register as self-employed and sort out your own tax and NICs. Since Universal Credit assumes anyone self employed has an income of 35hrs x £7.50 (£262.50), as does Council Tax Support, I would be considerably worse off doing this, especially as the company does not guarantee any shifts at all, never mind that they are only talking about 25hrs per week at most.

    What I would like to ask is, can the jobcentre sanction me if I refuse to do this?
Page 1
    • pmlindyloo
    • By pmlindyloo 3rd Oct 17, 10:59 AM
    • 10,902 Posts
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    pmlindyloo
    • #2
    • 3rd Oct 17, 10:59 AM
    • #2
    • 3rd Oct 17, 10:59 AM
    The Jobcentre has sent me for an interview for a part-time supermarket sampling job offered by REL Field Marketing, but according to the T&Cs on their website, they don't actually employ you - you have to register as self-employed and sort out your own tax and NICs. Since Universal Credit assumes anyone self employed has an income of 35hrs x £7.50 (£262.50), as does Council Tax Support, I would be considerably worse off doing this, especially as the company does not guarantee any shifts at all, never mind that they are only talking about 25hrs per week at most.

    What I would like to ask is, can the jobcentre sanction me if I refuse to do this?
    Originally posted by csnann
    I think you have two choices.

    1. Attend the interview and find out exactly the terms and conditions of the job. This may be one of those jobs where you are 'employed' in terms of what you are expected to do but expect you to be self employed to save their paying tax and NI. if that is the case then that may be a good reason to refuse the job.

    2. Discuss the terms and conditions with your job coach and see what their response is.

    Whatever you do, don't just not go without getting advice from the Job Centre.

    As regards the money issue, something again to discuss with your job coach.
    • csnann
    • By csnann 3rd Oct 17, 11:05 AM
    • 443 Posts
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    csnann
    • #3
    • 3rd Oct 17, 11:05 AM
    • #3
    • 3rd Oct 17, 11:05 AM
    Hello, I have looked at the T&Cs, this is what they say

    All of our Tactical Field Staff are self employed. That means that you must be registered as self employed and in possession of a Unique Tax Reference (UTR) which can be requested through the HMRC website at HMRC.gov.uk.
    When you are paid we will not deduct any income tax or national insurance payments. You are responsible for declaring all the payments you receive from us to HMRC. You must provide us with your bank account details during the registration process in order that we can make payments to you.

    Will I receive a payslip?

    No, as you are self-employed, you will not receive a payslip. You will however be able to see what you have been paid through a remittance advice note which we will provide to you monthly.


    Will I be employed by REL?

    No, as a self employed individual you will not be employed by REL, nor will you have a contract of employment with us. You will be free to accept work or choose not to depending upon your circumstances at that time. We would ask though that once you have accepted work you keep to that commitment and carry out the activity.

    This is worse than a zero hours contract!
    Last edited by csnann; 03-10-2017 at 11:08 AM.
    • Darksparkle
    • By Darksparkle 3rd Oct 17, 11:20 AM
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    Darksparkle
    • #4
    • 3rd Oct 17, 11:20 AM
    • #4
    • 3rd Oct 17, 11:20 AM
    As said, I’d be querying the terms and conditions of the job to establish if its genuine self employment.
    • pmlindyloo
    • By pmlindyloo 3rd Oct 17, 11:32 AM
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    pmlindyloo
    • #5
    • 3rd Oct 17, 11:32 AM
    • #5
    • 3rd Oct 17, 11:32 AM
    it certainly seems from the T&Cs that this may be genuine self employment as you do not have to accept the work.

    According to this link:

    https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/universal-credit/before-you-apply/self-employed/

    the minimum threshold for self employment would not start for the first 12 months for UC so that is one thing you wouldn't have to worry about.

    My thoughts would be to speak to your job coach to confirm this and go to the interview and find out more details.
    • Mersey
    • By Mersey 3rd Oct 17, 1:01 PM
    • 1,634 Posts
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    Mersey
    • #6
    • 3rd Oct 17, 1:01 PM
    • #6
    • 3rd Oct 17, 1:01 PM
    UC claimants are meant to have any self employment approved by a JobCentre Plus member of staff who deals with this.


    After this 1 hour assessment, a claimant would receive a UC5 booklet and have to report any earnings to the UC national contact centre each month.


    A JCP certainly couldn't sanction a claimant for refusing to take self employment (as it isn't employment that a Direction could be given to mandate you to take).


    It may simply be that the JCP was unaware that this is how this employer chooses to operate. If it isn't genuine self-employment and they're merely doing this to avoid NICs they can be reported.
    Please be polite to OPs and remember this is a site for Claimants and Appellants to seek redress against their bank, ex-boss or retailer. If they wanted morality or the view of the IoD or Bank they'd ask them.
    • csnann
    • By csnann 3rd Oct 17, 5:23 PM
    • 443 Posts
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    csnann
    • #7
    • 3rd Oct 17, 5:23 PM
    • #7
    • 3rd Oct 17, 5:23 PM
    Thanks to everyone who replied, I will go to the interview and print out the T&Cs page to show the jobcentre. Its very likely they don't know about it, I doubt they check everything about the jobs on their website!
    • pmlindyloo
    • By pmlindyloo 3rd Oct 17, 5:57 PM
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    pmlindyloo
    • #8
    • 3rd Oct 17, 5:57 PM
    • #8
    • 3rd Oct 17, 5:57 PM
    UC claimants are meant to have any self employment approved by a JobCentre Plus member of staff who deals with this.


    After this 1 hour assessment, a claimant would receive a UC5 booklet and have to report any earnings to the UC national contact centre each month.


    A JCP certainly couldn't sanction a claimant for refusing to take self employment (as it isn't employment that a Direction could be given to mandate you to take).


    It may simply be that the JCP was unaware that this is how this employer chooses to operate. If it isn't genuine self-employment and they're merely doing this to avoid NICs they can be reported.
    Originally posted by Mersey
    I have no personal experience experience of UC so bow to your knowledge if you do.

    Have found this which does seem to say that work does include self employment and therefore you could be sanctioned if you failed to take up the job offer.

    Understand that it should be checked to see if it is really self employment.

    The work-related groups
    J2002 The work-related requirements which can be imposed on a claimant depend upon
    which group the claimant falls into1
    . The groups are
    1. no work-related requirements
    2. work-focused interview requirement only
    3. work-focused interview and work preparation requirements
    4. all work-related requirements.
    1 WR Act 12, s 13(3)
    What a work-related requirement is
    J2003 A work-related requirement means1 a
    1. work-focused interview requirement
    2. work preparation requirement
    3. work search requirement
    4. work availability requirement.
    1 WR Act 12, s 13(2)
    J2004 The Secretary of State can impose a work-related requirement on a claimant which
    the claimant must comply with1
    . If a claimant does not comply with a work-related
    requirement then there may be a reduction in their award of UC2
    . ADM Chapters K1
    – K9 provide guidance on reductions and sanctions.
    1 WR Act 12, s 13(1); 2 s 26 & 27
    J2005 In this guidance, references to obtaining paid work include1 obtaining
    1. more paid work or
    2. better paid work.
    “Work” includes employed earner’s employment and self-employment.
    1 UC Regs, reg 87
    • donnajunkie
    • By donnajunkie 3rd Oct 17, 6:47 PM
    • 26,849 Posts
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    donnajunkie
    • #9
    • 3rd Oct 17, 6:47 PM
    • #9
    • 3rd Oct 17, 6:47 PM
    The Jobcentre has sent me for an interview for a part-time supermarket sampling job offered by REL Field Marketing, but according to the T&Cs on their website, they don't actually employ you - you have to register as self-employed and sort out your own tax and NICs. Since Universal Credit assumes anyone self employed has an income of 35hrs x £7.50 (£262.50), as does Council Tax Support, I would be considerably worse off doing this, especially as the company does not guarantee any shifts at all, never mind that they are only talking about 25hrs per week at most.

    What I would like to ask is, can the jobcentre sanction me if I refuse to do this?
    Originally posted by csnann
    It’s frowned upon by some here but you could just subtly sabotage your chances by not being very impressive at the interview.
    I dont know whether you can be forced to go self employed. You could ask cab if no-one can say here. You would also need proof it is self employed if you refuse on that basis in case they still try to sanction you by saying otherwise. Much simpler to just not get offered the job though.
    • teddysmum
    • By teddysmum 3rd Oct 17, 8:10 PM
    • 8,623 Posts
    • 5,096 Thanks
    teddysmum
    The problem is that supermarkets only have a demonstration once a month or even less often, so there would be a lot of travelling involved between jobs. Doyou drive and if so what would cost/remuneration for the use of your own vehicle be, bearing in mind that you would have to take special insurance as you'd be driving for work purposes.
    • Mersey
    • By Mersey 3rd Oct 17, 10:58 PM
    • 1,634 Posts
    • 780 Thanks
    Mersey
    I have no personal experience experience of UC so bow to your knowledge if you do.

    Have found this which does seem to say that work does include self employment and therefore you could be sanctioned if you failed to take up the job offer.
    Originally posted by pmlindyloo


    'Work' was just amended to include self-employment in order that UC claimants who are part time (employed and self-employed) can be given a Direction to attend and so on as the list suggests.


    But it doesn't follow that a claimant can be sanctioned for failing to accept a self-employed position. It's just illogical if you think about it (for a JCP to mandate a claimant to become self-employed).


    As I said, it's actually not straightforward for UC claimants to go self-employed. It has to follow a prescribed route in order for them to be a self-employed UC claimant.


    However, once this hurdle is passed (after having had the interview* and the DWP agree the UC claimant is in full-time gainful self-employment), "they won't have to look for or be available for other work in order to continue claiming Universal Credit" - UC5, p2.


    [Again, the UC5 lists what is needed at this interview, including proof of having registered as self-employed with HMRC, including your Unique Tax Ref, business plan, list of customers, marketing ideas etc]
    Please be polite to OPs and remember this is a site for Claimants and Appellants to seek redress against their bank, ex-boss or retailer. If they wanted morality or the view of the IoD or Bank they'd ask them.
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