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Online real estate companies face class proceedings from “self-employed” agents

More than 100 real estate agents believe they are eligible for holiday payments and pension contributions, so they are set to take legal action against online realtors Purple Brick and Yopa.

The Justice Contractor (C4J) making the claim believes that up to 2,500 self-employed realtors are eligible to participate in it.

Purplebricks and Yopa use self-employed “regional owners” who manage corporate customers in large areas and “local real estate professionals” who work under them. Many of these workers say their work should have been treated as full-time employment.

According to judicial contractor consultant Peter Fletcher, if an online realtor turns out to be treating a self-employed person as if he were hired, each could incur thousands of pounds of debt. There is sex.

Class action proceedings focus on non-payment of holiday allowances that should be paid if the self-employed person proves to be actually employed.

Fletcher said: ..In recent cases Amazon When Uber Self-employed contractors are actually known to be workers from a legal point of view.

“Our actions towards online real estate agencies, which may not have been the case, but may have designated their workers as self-employed, are similar to these other well-known consequences. Starting with, we therefore collect thousands of pounds for the parties involved in some cases.

“If you think your employment situation may be financially disadvantageous, we recommend that you register on the C4J website as soon as possible.”

A Purplebricks spokesperson said: We have always provided legal advice regarding the licensing model. The advice clearly shows that these individuals operate as a limited company, operate their own businesses and have full control over their own staff. “

Legal comment

Lee McIntyre-Hamilton, Keystone Law’s tax partner, said it’s important to remember that case law can make a big difference in employment. Over the years, there has been a clear increase in awareness of the employment situation of the workforce.

“This heightened awareness should be noted as a warning to employers who are deliberately violating the rules, but it also raises concerns for many employers who are truly trying to comply with the rules. There is no doubt, but due to the complexity and the fact that the employment situation is based primarily on judicial law, it is possible to misassess the position.

“In these cases, it is also important to recognize that there are differences in employment status for tax and employment law purposes. For example, in the case of Uber, drivers are considered” workers “under employment law and are identified. Given the right to employment. However, there is no tax “worker” status and the individual is employed or self-employed. In the case of Uber, HMRC seems happy that Uber drivers are still considered self-employed for tax purposes and do not have to pay a salary. “

IR35Shield status expert Dave Chaplin said: False self-employment is nothing new, and the long-standing “army of lawyers” problem still exists. The company seeks to draft a contract that denies the worker the right to acquire the status of the worker. But after this year’s Supreme Court ruling with Uber, these companies are at great risk.

“Status law is complex and is based on decades of case law. For years, this remained in the” too difficult “section of potential policymaking, and there was a lot of consultation, There was no action.

“There is a competing demand for a flexible workforce to thrive, which calls for supporting the economic growth of SMEs and at the same time preventing workers from being exploited.

“There is no easy answer, but there are some options that Congress can consider to help reduce false self-employment.”

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Online real estate companies face class proceedings from “self-employed” agents

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