You and the Law – 14th July 2009

Working up to a holiday

I am classed as self-employed, and work for a firm on commission. In the last four years I have never received holiday pay. Is this right? LS

Self-employed people are not entitled to holiday pay. The question you have to ask yourself therefore is whether you are genuinely self-employed. This will affect more than just your holiday pay entitlement of course.

An employment tribunal would look, not just at your tax and national insurance arrangements but at the whole of your relationship with the firm.
If you work for other people as well you may be self-employed.

If on the other hand you do the firm’s bidding when they tell you to do it you may be regarded as an employee. Discuss this in more detail with a solicitor specialising in employment matters.

Traffic in the precinct

Where I live the shopping area has been pedestrianised, but it is now used by skateboarders, cyclists and children on scooters. Who would be responsible for any injury caused by these activities? AR

This is a common problem, and one that you should take up with your local councillor.

The police can take action against and prosecute cyclists for riding on pavements or for riding in a dangerous manner, but it¹s possible by-laws may have to be invoked to prevent the other wheeled vehicles you mention from being used in a shopping precinct.

In a privately-owned mall the owners could possibly be held responsible for injuries caused in this way. The person who caused the accident would of course be liable in the first instance.

While it may not be practical to sue a 10-year-old on a scooter it might in some circumstances be possible to bring a claim against the parents.

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