Casual Worker Agreement

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What is a Casual Worker Agreement?

A casual worker is often called a zero hour worker but there is no clear definition of what is meant by a zero hour contract. Casual workers are typically used by businesses where it doesn’t make sense for staff to be hired on a full time or part time basis as employees. Instead, a business might require flexibility and a casual worker agreement provides for this. Under a casual worker agreement the worker has a different employment relationship with the business and employment status than employees. Crucially, there is no mutuality of obligation between the business and the worker. This means that there is no guarantee of working hours and that the business is under no obligation to offer certain shifts and that the worker is under no obligation to accept those that they are offered. Casual workers do still possess statutory rights in the United Kingdom and it is important that you abide by these, including any relevant working time regulations, in addition to general health and safety requirements. Providing your workers with a casual worker contract is just as important as the contracts of employment your full time staff might have and are key in making sure both parties understand their rights and obligations.

Key features of a Casual Worker Agreement:

  • Exclusion of mutuality of obligation- the worker is neither a part time or full time employee or self-employed. The working relationship and obligation is therefore different as both business and worker can offer, choose and dismiss offers of work on an ad hoc basis
  • Place of work - where will the worker be required to work?
  • Annual leave- what is the worker’s annual leave (also know as holiday entitlement or holiday pay)
  • Rate of pay- what will the worker be paid? Will their pay be calculate on the number of hours of work at an hourly rate? Note that workers are entitled to the national minimum wage
  • Working arrangements - what are the hours of casual work?
  • Notice period - how much notice must the business or the worker give for ad hoc shifts? How much notice must either party give to terminate the agreement?
  • Probationary Period - this allows you to dismiss a worker if they are not right for the role once they have joined. Including this clause will help you reduce the chances of you being accused of unfair dismissal which could be taken to an employment tribunal if you want to get rid of workers
  • Benefits - Is the casual worker entitled to enrolment on a pension scheme? Will they receive qualifying training?
  • Sickness - Is your worker entitled to something other than the statutory sick pay (SSP)?
  • Data protection and confidentiality - you need to protect your business’ data and crucially the personal data of your customers

When should I use a Casual Worker contract?

You should use a casual working agreement when you want to take on casual workers- often referred to in the media as zero hour workers. Casual workers are great if you require flexible working to keep your business providing a continuous service in busy seasons, such as during the Christmas period. Common types of work that use zero hour contracts are:

  • Delivery driving
  • Hospitality work
  • Warehouse work
  • Care work

It is also common for students to be casual workers as they can work during their holidays and be under no obligation to work during term times when they might be located elsewhere.

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Benefits of the Legislate Casual Worker Agreement template

Legislate is an easy-to-use contract management platform which offers standardised legal documents which you can tailor on your own by answering simple questions.

Legislate’s casual worker agreements are up to date with all relevant boiler plate clauses such as governing law, disciplinary and grievance procedures.

Moreover, with Legislate you can access key contract statistics in real-time. To get started, read a tutorial, book a demo or sign up to Legislate now!

How to create a Casual Worker Agreement with Legislate

Legislate helps you create a lawyer-approved casual worker agreement online in minutes and on no legal budget. To get started, complete the following steps:

  1. Sign up to Legislate
  2. Click on create a contract
  3. Select casual worker agreement from the list of available contracts
  4. Answer simple questions about the agreement such as its purpose and term so that you have sufficient protection
  5. Pay £9.95 to preview the contract and invite parties to e-sign the contract.


The opinions on this page are for general information purposes only and do not constitute legal advice on which you should rely.

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