Landmark employment case: Meghan Gorman

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In a recent Employment Tribunal case a hairdresser won the right to claim notice pay, holiday pay and redundancy pay in what is being called a landmark case in employment law.

Meghan Gorman worked as a self-employed hairdresser for 6 years. The employment tribunal in Manchester found that the level of control she retained over her working practices effectively made her an employee.

The definition of a worker goes beyond the existence of an employment contact with the Employment Tribunal referring to a 3 part test when determining an individual’s employment status.

The 3 part test looks at:

  1. The control an employer has overran individual’s working hours and methods of working,
  2. The personal service test, does the work need to be carried out in person or can someone else do it
  3. Obligation, is there an obligation for the employer to provide work and an obligation for the individual to accept the work provided.

The question of whether a contract of employment exists requires an assessment of the whole picture and consideration of the above 3 part test. In Miss Gorman’s case she was able to show the employer exercised sufficient control over her to class her as an employee and therefore benefit from the protections offered by law.

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