There are many different reasons why you might find yourself as a temporary workers. It may be that you have been struggling to find permanent work or a waiting for the right job to come up. Or maybe it is a conscious decision as you plan to go travelling or want to work on other projects or be around for your children. Whatever you reasons are, it is important that you know your rights a temporary worker.
Holiday leave is the area where employers have usually tried to fleece temporary workers. However, there is legislation is place to say that temporary workers are entitled to holiday pay from the day that they start work. You need to be aware of this as some agencies will factor it into your hourly rate and you need to make sure they are clear about how much they are paying you in wages and how much of it is holiday pay. Every worker, whether permanent or temporary, is entitled to 5.6 weeks paid holiday each full year worked.
Everybody who takes on paid work is entitled to receive the national minimum wage for all the hours that they work and must not have any unlawful deductions taken from their pay. You can also not be made to work more than 48 hours a week unless you choose to do so. If you are required to operate any heavy or dangerous machinery then you must be given proper training and your health and safety must be looked after. In addition to this, you have the same protection against discrimination as permanent workers would.
Sick Pay and Maternity Pay
Sick Pay and maternity leave is a bit of a grey area for temporary workers. If you have been working for the same employer for over three months then you are entitled to statutory sick pay. When it comes to maternity rights, these are a bit more complicated.
Temporary workers are entitled to maternity pay as long as you have worked for the same employer for 26 weeks by the 15th week before your baby is due and have earned at least £107 a week. However, you employers do not have to give temporary workers maternity leave and there is no obligation to keep their role open for them.
What You Need To Know About Dismissal
Again, the rules about unfair dismissal are a bit fuzzy when it comes to temporary workers. If you have been working for the same employer for over a year then you can claim for unfair dismissal but there may also be some loopholes that can help you claim before this time, for example if you are let go because you are pregnant.
Just because you are a temporary worker doesn’t mean you don’t have any rights, although they will be different to those of permanent workers. You are still entitled to receive minimum wage, holiday pay and have the same health and safety and discrimination protection. You may not be able to claim sick pay or maternity pay but try and get all these points covered so you are clear about them when you start work.
I started work as a Lettings Officer 2 weeks ago. I was the sole temp for the role. However the manager was giving me work to another temp whom started 2 days before me and it was causing confusion. The IT equipment was not working. No office paper for 3 days.No mobile access until I was dissmissed. I was not allowed to look for permanent work or have time off when I informed my agency. Do I have the right to complaint if there equipment is sub standard
CCF - 11-Feb-21 @ 6:55 PM
i was working foreign agency I was puton furlong member told me that I will Williams wanted to put somebody else and my job from spares department I was working in the wiring department.of Ivor Williams
Big boy - 13-Jan-21 @ 9:50 PM
If you have been working for the same employer for over "a year" then you can claim for unfair dismissal. I believe this is currently "two years".
Malcolm - 12-Oct-20 @ 10:10 AM
I work for a company in New Jersey as a temp. I am actually covering a maternity leave who is also a temp through my same temp agency. I would love to stay here and become permanent but they tell me that she might come back How can I be a temp for a temp??I don’t believe they told me it was a temp that I was covering for. What are my rights?
Bennie - 28-Jul-20 @ 7:23 PM
I am a temporary delivery driver for Morrison’s and we currently use hire vans for deliveries. I had an incident yesterday where driving out of a customer driveway caught the drivers side of the van against a hidden metal fence support. I reported it straightaway to a team leader and admitted it was my fault and filled out the relevant accident report paperwork to be forwarded to the head office insurance company. I’m worried about being dismissed due to being a temporary employee. What are my rights?
Nutty - 24-Jul-20 @ 5:41 PM
Hi, i am semi retired but i am not receiving government pension for anorher 4 years. I have been working on bank for 1 and a half years with the same company i worked for before i semi retired. As i am not working at the minute as my employee does not need me is there any financial help i can get. Many thanks
Hat - 22-Apr-20 @ 9:58 AM
I have been working in the same place for 1 year.My Manager clearly picks on me,tries to intimidate me. Ensure I am not told about any progression. I use to answer calls, cover reception and upload applications. Now she has me just scanning all day.All she does all day I is what are you mow doing? When she clearly knows what I'm doing.When I move to go bathroom she come after me and ask where I'm going. She be on her mobile talking about me so I can hear, I try to ignore her. She tells new members of staff to keep away from the gang, it's appalling. My until died and I was called in to tell her, she said ok he's died so need to come in. I am 19 yrs old and this is the hell I am going through. There is also another staff member my age that she picks on all day. It's clear to see she does not like young people. I had a stomach ache. I said I need to go home she said to me am I having a eptoic pregnancy. I've never as yet dated.
I emailed the CEO all she said was take it on the chin, as well as tell me that I maybe upset because my role is changing. What role is changing. I scan all day. Since starting work I've never had a job discription. . I called my agency to tell her of my hell and how much I hated being at this place. I wrote the issues and they told me that 4 other people had complaint. My agency also said they did not know you were still working in the assignment. That is terrible as my time sheet is submitted every week, this shows that my agency did not look after me.
Last Thursday 26th Sept I could not cope anymore so I gave 1 weeks notice at 9am to the Manager. She smirked in my face looks. Then She said near to end of the day she wanted to see me re the notice. At 5pm the manager said can I have your ID card and said she dismissing me and no need to come back. I was escorted me off the premises like a crimal in front of other staff. I have given my notice in so how can I be dismissed. This behaviour clearly shows how I have been treated all along.
I have lost my confidence, emotions are very low. I'm very depressed as I have never done anything but do my work.My mother had emailed the CEO and she tried to tell my mum that I am a temp and have no rights.My mum told her that that was not the case, and if anyone temp or perm staff is being bullied she needs to investigate. The CEO told her take it on the chin.
I want to take legal action for the damage they have inflicted on me as greatly effected me mentally and emotionally.
Please I would like to discuss as this should not happen to anyone especially a young person starting out in the work place.
Caz - 29-Sep-19 @ 8:25 PM
I have been at the same place for nearly 4 and a half years. Is there a set amount of time where, the company has to take me off agency books and employ me direct?
Cauli - 20-May-19 @ 8:04 PM
I have been working for an NHS Trust for just over 2 years. I have been told for about a year that that the role I do is to become substantive, that the department have the funding and the job description has been updated, but seemingly nothing has been done to progress this along. Now that I've been with them for 2 years, have my workers rights changed?
Mode - 27-Feb-19 @ 4:00 PM
Hi I use to work for the westin hotel for ten year we had a new boss come in the last year of 2017 he been there he he got to no people he like to play I like to keep it on the work side well one day my daughtergot put over she had my grandbabythey took her to jail they were calling for some one to come get her I was at work I got off at 3 they kept calling my phone I seen 911 I answer they said if no one was there in 30 min they were takingher to 241 kids I look for chef I panick I seen the superior and told him he cover me was off the next day so when I came back in he fired me me you have some bossed that take they picks and he was one so everyone at the job seen the one pick that he let do what ever he want and was scare to say somethingso I ask him at the meeting sinceyou still new why do you let dark take 3 lunch and don't say nothinghe was upset so I told him to be careful with that cause everyone sees it he did not hear from me no more been job huntinghe has been shootingme down when they call him so I went to a temp lgc they send me there to work I go in say good morninghe start talkingto me telling me he got another baby on the way I stat working everything find 2 hour later some how peoplethat work there came and said hi next thing I no he said he can't work wit me ok I work 4 hour and leave they had me sing to work today sat in banquet were he don't work raining like he'll I get there they tell me they don't need me and no one there what can I do help
None - 1-Dec-18 @ 3:18 PM
Hi , I’m an agency worker have been for 2 years or so working at the same place .
There’s a few things go on I turn a blind eye to , nobody’s perfect right
Last couple of months full time worker who everybody knows is an alcoholic walking about as if he doesn’t have a care in the world , no 1 complains , the people in charge know wat he is (a liability ) I can’t complain because I will be replaced by the next 1 in line , any advice on this please
Willie - 12-Oct-18 @ 7:08 PM
My partner is employed via an agency for 8 months. With the bad weather - severe snow - full time staff have been told to stay at home but temporary staff have been told to come in or take leave.
As a refuse driver the council have decided it is unsafe to drive but still want temp staff to come in on the dangerous roads.
any advice please?
Kat59 - 1-Mar-18 @ 9:11 PM
As a agency worker iv been in same job for over 3 month now do I receive any noice if I am being payed of ie 1week ?
Brian - 16-Jan-18 @ 10:18 AM
I am wondering if the holiday pay law is the same in all states. The temp agency I work for chooses if they want to pay time and a half for holidays. Thank you for your time.
Madeline - 11-Jan-18 @ 2:20 PM
Moira - Your Question:
I work for a Scottish University as a temporary worker, not through an agency but though an 'in-house' department that recruits temp staff within the university.University staff get 34 days annual leave per year but I have been told that I only get 28 under my contract. My contract also states that I cant take annual leave until the end of my contract and could take it then or be paid out for my annual leave. My first contract was a year long so I couldn't take any annual leave until December. It really affected my health and I was absolutely exhausted by the end of the year. I feel this policy is really unfair and detrimental to health. I thought temporary workers are entitled to the same rights as permanent staff? Am I wrong?
Employers must not treat workers on fixed-term contracts less favourably than permanent employees. This means theoretically you are entitled to the same pay and conditions as permanent staff and/or the same or equivalent benefits package. The term ‘objective justification’ is the company's only legal reasoning not to adhere to this. However it would need to prove there is a good reason to treat a contract employer differently. Therefore, you would have to give ACAS a call to see if your employers are working within the legal guidleines. I hope this helps.
WelfareAtWork - 2-Dec-15 @ 11:32 AM
I work for a Scottish University as a temporary worker, not through an agency but though an 'in-house' department that recruits temp staff within the university.
University staff get 34 days annual leave per year but I have been told that I only get 28 under my contract.
My contract also states that I cant take annual leave until the end of my contract and could take it then or be paid out for my annual leave. My first contract was a year long so I couldn't take any annual leave until December. It really affected my health and I was absolutely exhausted by the end of the year.
I feel this policy is really unfair and detrimental to health. I thought temporary workers are entitled to the same rights as permanent staff? Am I wrong?
Moira - 1-Dec-15 @ 3:32 PM
I've been in my temporary role for two years - the dept is merging with another which means a restructuring.
There will be one role but there are currently two people on fixed contracts doing the same job - and I have been told they will be offered an interview and then if they don't take it I could apply- do I have any rights as a long term temp to be able to apply for it now?
RJ - 30-Nov-15 @ 6:26 PM
My husband has been working for a company called Helping Hand in Hereford.Initiallyhe started with an agency then was employed on a temporary contract.His line manager has told him and other staff that he has to take 3 days holiday in July as the company will be doing a stock takeand they will not be required.They are however keeping two agency staff on to undertake this task.Can he be forced to take holiday??Also when being offerred the job the company and the line manager were fully aware that he had suffered quite a major heart attack 18 months prior.He feels that the line manager deliberatly stretching his capabilities and that she is trying to force him to leave.Other members of staff have also commented on how differently she treats him.My husband has been advised by another supervisor not to complain because she would ensure that he loses his job - what can we do??
Beany - 3-Jun-15 @ 3:07 PM
I have been working for a company for over a year.
Nearly 90% of the time in Labs, where the hourly wage is more. I have asked about it to my supervisor and they have said because I am bank worker im only get the minimum wage!.
Plus because I also work for the same company at a second place of work at night I have no rights to get PPE from the first place of work.
Yesterday I spoke with my supervisor again, they said the wage would be paid but not the PPE.
Today I contacted the Manager to ask about back payment. they said they would look into it. but no PPe as I don't work enough hours in the first place of work.
What are my rights?.