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    • Supersonos
    • By Supersonos 6th Aug 18, 3:47 PM
    • 179Posts
    • 69Thanks
    Can self-employed agree their rates?
    • #1
    • 6th Aug 18, 3:47 PM
    Can self-employed agree their rates? 6th Aug 18 at 3:47 PM
    I've tried Googling but no luck. Can self-employed people discuss their rates with each other and then agree to all charge the same?

    On the one hand, I was thinking not, as this would be price fixing and not in the interests of competition.

    But equally, isn't that what unions do? Agree rates and, when that rate isn't paid, make all their members strike to bully people into paying what they want.

    What am I missing here?!
Page 2
    • Dox
    • By Dox 6th Aug 18, 4:55 PM
    • 1,185 Posts
    • 899 Thanks
    I don't have a contract (well, I do once I start a job, but when the job finishes a couple of weeks later, that contract expires).
    Originally posted by Supersonos
    Contracts expire but enduring covenants don't - and keeping confidential information confidential endures. Charge out rates normally fall into this category.

    If a client spots that a number of self-employed individuals all suddenly start charging the same rate, be prepared for some awkward questions. It won't go down well if they think you are colluding, so for purely commercial reasons, it would be a fairly daft thing to do.

    A possible way round it, given (from what you say) that you seem to undertake lots of very short term jobs all doing similar things, might be to set up a limited company and supply your services via that. It would be entirely reasonable to charge everyone out at the same rate for the same type of work.
    Last edited by Dox; 06-08-2018 at 5:00 PM.
    • theoretica
    • By theoretica 6th Aug 18, 5:26 PM
    • 5,615 Posts
    • 6,920 Thanks
    I have seen a number of organisations hold surveys into what their members are charging/paid. Not agreeing fees or pressurising people into charging a set amount, but letting all the members see where they fit in and if they are charging more or less than others in their area.
    But a banker, engaged at enormous expense,
    Had the whole of their cash in his care.
    Lewis Carroll
    • GreenTreen123
    • By GreenTreen123 6th Aug 18, 7:04 PM
    • 105 Posts
    • 39 Thanks
    No itís not allowed but do it anyway
    • sangie595
    • By sangie595 6th Aug 18, 8:41 PM
    • 5,702 Posts
    • 9,948 Thanks
    But equally, isn't that what unions do? Agree rates and, when that rate isn't paid, make all their members strike to bully people into paying what they want.

    What am I missing here?!
    Originally posted by Supersonos
    What your are missing is any knowledge whatever about what unions do! Unions do not make their members do anything. Unions ARE their members. Unions do not set the rates - employers do. If employees do not like the rates of pay or other terms, they have two choices - go somewhere else, or take industrial action (which may not be striking). Industrial action is not bullying - it is the exercise of collective will and power, and if the almost all power wasn't already vested in the employer, then it wouldn't be necessary.
    • shortcrust
    • By shortcrust 7th Aug 18, 10:39 AM
    • 2,175 Posts
    • 3,363 Thanks
    We don't meet in darkened corners but people know what others charge and no one wants to blow the starting whistle on a race to the bottom. If I cut my rates by 25% I'd probably just lose 25% of my income, if not more. People don't always go for the cheapest option.
    • sangie595
    • By sangie595 7th Aug 18, 11:14 AM
    • 5,702 Posts
    • 9,948 Thanks
    And some of us rarely go for the cheapest option! There's usually a reason it's cheap!
    • getmore4less
    • By getmore4less 7th Aug 18, 11:29 AM
    • 34,725 Posts
    • 21,161 Thanks
    plenty of environments where multiple people of the same category are needed at the same time.

    The driver will be do you go looking for the jobs or do people come looking for you and how the negotiations start.

    how are the rates currently pitched, do they say here is a job £200 a day or do they ask you what your rate is?

    As a group it will be supply and demand that ultimately drives the rates.

    When there is plenty of work rates should go up and hours worked go up, when there is less work the workers should reduce supply by have people work less and take holidays so they can keep the rates higher.

    it the taxi problem when it is quiet you see loads of taxi drivers just waiting for work, when it is busy and they have made enough for the day they finish and there is a shortage of taxis, if thye all worked when busy and took it in turn having time off they would earn the same but spend less time idle.
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