The Employment Appeals Tribunal (EAT) have found that two Foster Carers are the employees of their local council and have full employment rights. This is a significant ruling and precedent for the sector given that historically, Foster Carers have been considered self-employed for tax purposes.
The basis for the ruling was as a result of the Council having a very high degree of control over how the Foster Carers carried out their duties, the extent to which the council had a duty to offer the Carers work who were then obliged to accept it.
Furthermore, the Foster Carers received a payment of £32,000 as part of their fee for their fostering services, which the EAT considered this amounted to remuneration.
This ruling is not just a warning for the Foster Care sector, but it also acts as a reminder to all businesses who use self-employed contractors, given that the key factors for determining employment status includes control, mutuality of obligation and personal service.
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