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I’ve offered work to someone who is self-employed as we have just won a new contract and I’ve been told that I need to make sure that his working status is correct. How do I do this?

You need to consider the true employment status of anyone working for you to satisfy Inland Revenue and to ensure the correct deductions of tax and national insurance. If you send us your e-mail address Every Cloud will be happy to send you a short checklist to assist you with this.

I have a small business which has been running for just over a year. I am hoping to recruit my first employee shortly, how soon do I need to give them a contract of employment?

You must give any employee written particulars of employment within 2 months of starting work with you, although Every Cloud would recommend that you do this immediately an offer of employment is made. This will enable your new employee to know exactly what you expect of them from day one and their legal obligations under the contract.

I work in an office with two others and I’m thinking of bringing one other on board, do I need to carry out risk assessments for Health and Safety?

Health and Safety legislation is in place to protect our workplaces. That said, as a business of fewer than 5 people there is no legal requirement for you to carry out written risk assessments although the HSE would expect you to carry out informal assessments of risk and put into place precautions to minimise those risks. We would advise that should you be a business of high risks then it would be prudent to have a written risk assessment in place supported by procedures supporting safe working practices and these should be made available to your staff. For further advice please contact us and we’ll be happy to carry out an audit for you.

I employ sub-contractors to assist in my business. Who’s responsible for their health and safety?

Under the Health and Safety at Work Act the Employer (You) has a duty to safeguard the health and safety and welfare at work of:

  • employees
  • other workers – agency, temporary or casual
  • trainees
  • contractors
  • visitors
  • neighbours and the general public

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