Zero Hours Contracts UK – What Are They & What Rights Do Workers Have?

If you’re in the business world, then you’ve no doubt heard about zero hour contracts. As the discussion around them continues to ramp up, it can be tough to get to the bottom of what zero hour contracts really are and why they’re in use.

signing a zero hour contract on a wooden table
Make sure you understand employee rights when making or signing a zero hour contract.

Today, we’re going to focus on the facts. We’ll let you know exactly what a zero hour contract is, its advantages and disadvantages, and how they should be used in line with the law. We’ll delve into workers’ rights, employment status, and much more, so be sure to pay attention!


What Are Zero Hours Contracts?

A zero hours contract is a type of working arrangement where the employer does not guarantee a minimum number of working hours. Instead, workers are assigned hours on an ad hoc basis, with the right to turn down any work that they’re offered.

There are a variety of industries that use zero hours contracts. Most commonly, this type of arrangement is used for casual and gig economy work, thanks to the flexibility that it offers. However, zero hours contracts can also be found in the NHS, care homes, and hospitality jobs.


Zero Hours Contracts in Practise

According to the ONS, as at September 2017, 2.9% of the UK workforce had a zero hour contract. That was 900,000 UK workers. This number is still rising.

Many employees find the reality of a zero hours contract is heavily tilted in favour of their employer. They are sometimes expected to work full time hours without the protection of a contract, and in some cases, can be told they can’t turn down shifts. Many are unaware of their rights and the laws surrounding zero hour employment.


Zero Hours Contracts Advantages and Disadvantages

Despite the sometimes poor reputation of this type of employment contract, it does have advantages for both parties, as well as disadvantages. We’ll look at the key pros and cons for both employer and employee.

Advantages of Zero Hour Contracts

Zero hour contracts offer a number of advantages for employers and workers alike. Perhaps the biggest benefit for both parties is flexibility. Employers can get workers in whenever they need them whilst the workers are free to decide when they want to take on the hours.

This means zero hours contracts are particularly beneficial for employers that offer fluctuating or irregular work. Employers can save a lot of cash on payroll costs by not paying their workers a full time salary.

For workers, another advantage is that they can use a zero hours contract for extra income. Employers cannot tie down their workers with this type of contract, meaning they are free to work at multiple places. As a result, many workers are able to use this to their advantage and top up their income when and where they need to.


Disadvantages Of Zero Hours Contracts

Although zero hours contracts clearly have their benefits, it’s important to talk about some of the drawbacks too. Since workers have the right to turn down any hours that they’re offered, employers cannot guarantee that they will have enough workers when they need them.

To get around this issue, employers often hire extra zero hour workers to ensure they won’t be shorthanded. But, in turn, this means that workers are offered fewer hours and inconsistent work patterns. So even though the flexibility of a zero hours contract can be good for a worker, it can also lead to unreliable income levels.


Appropriate And Inappropriate Use Of Zero Hour Contracts

Despite the drawbacks, when zero hour contracts are used responsibly by an employer, they can do away with some of the major disadvantages. The government has laid out a number of situations where the use of zero hour contracts is deemed to be “appropriate”:

For new businesses

Anyone who has started a business will know that it can be tough to afford full time salaries before a customer base has been built up. Zero hours contracts are a great solution in this case businesses can get people into work when they need them without shelling out for full time employees.

For seasonal work

Any seasonal work or jobs where there is fluctuating demand are also ideal for zero hours contracts. Retail stores may build up a bank of zero hours workers for surges during sale periods, for example. Since seasonal work is generally considered a casual arrangement, workers will also appreciate the opportunity to choose flexible hours.

For sickness cover

It is also considered appropriate for employers to have zero hours workers ready to cover unexpected staff sickness. This is particularly common with specialist roles, where other employees at the business can not easily step into the missing staff member’s shoes. For workers, sickness cover offers the chance to earn extra income whenever their services are required.

For specialist events

Similarly, employers might want to have specialist workers on the books for irregular events. For example, a restaurant could benefit from having zero hours staff available for wedding receptions and catering events. 

For service testing

Businesses often want to test their services before rolling them out to a broader market. Having staff available on flexible contracts is an easy way to get people in for ad hoc testing.


What Rights Do Zero Hour Contract Workers Have?

Anyone who’s working under a zero hours contract is entitled to a range of employment rights, including all of the same legal rights as a permanent worker. This section breaks each of them down and explains what a zero hour worker should expect to receive from their employer.

National Minimum Wage

Firstly, all zero hour workers are entitled to the National Minimum Wage or National Living Wage. Zero hour workers are no different from regular employees in this regard and must be paid in line with their age band.

Workers over 23 are entitled to the National Living Wage, whilst those under 23 are entitled to the National Minimum Wage. The government updates these wages every year, so employers must always know what they should be paying at any time.


Statutory Sick Pay

Most people on a zero hours contract are also entitled to Statutory Sick Pay (SSP). In the event that a worker is not able to come in due to illness, sick pay must be paid in line with their hourly rate. Zero hour workers are entitled to SSP if they meet the following criteria:

  • They’ve done work for the employer previously.
  • They’re sick for at least four days in a row (including regular days off).
  • They stick to company guidelines when reporting sickness.
  • In the past eight weeks, they’ve earned at least £120 per week on average.

This minimum weekly income must all come from the same employer. So if an employee works for more than one employer but does not earn £120 per week at any of them, they won’t have the right to sick pay.


Holiday leave

Just like regular employers, workers on a zero hours contract have the right to to paid annual leave. However, the exact number of days off that a worker can claim will depend on how many hours they’ve worked and any agreements in place with the employer.

At a minimum, zero hour workers are entitled to 5.6 weeks of paid holiday. This is Statutory Annual Leave and applies to all workers regardless of their contract.

Zero hour workers “accrue” their holiday leave as they work. If they work enough days or hours, then their holiday entitlement will surpass the statutory minimum. Zero hour workers should also accrue paid holiday when they’re on:

  • Sick leave.
  • Paternity, maternity, adoption, or shared parental leave.
  • A probation period.

Our guide on zero hour contract holiday pay entitlements has more on how to work out paid holiday rights.


Rest breaks

Zero hours workers are entitled to the same rest breaks as other employees. These include standard rest breaks during a day, rest between days or shifts, and weekly rest allocation.

Specifically, workers have the right to an uninterrupted break of 20 mins if they work 6 hours or more in a day. This break shouldn’t be at the very beginning or very end of the day, and the worker should be able to leave their workstation for the full break duration.

Between working days, a worker should get at least 11 hours of uninterrupted rest. If there is an emergency exception, the employer must make other break allowances to account for the lost rest time.

Finally, an employee is entitled to either 24 hours of rest in a 7 day period or 48 hours of rest in a 14 day period. The employer can choose to split the 14 day break allocation into two 24 hour chunks if they prefer.

Rest breaks are typically unpaid unless the worker has a contractual agreement with the employer.

Shift workers

For zero hours shift workers, rest breaks work slightly differently. In this case, the worker is not always entitled to the full legal breaks for their day or week. For example, this can happen if a worker’s hours change from a day shift to a night shift.


Refusing Hours on a Zero Hours Contract

Many workers wonder if they can refuse hours and shifts whilst on a zero hours contract. If you have a zero hours contract you can refuse any shift you are offered. Many employees are told by managers they have to work the shifts the employer requires. However this is not the case. The contract works in the same ways for both parties, and as a worker you have the right to refuse any hours offered to you.

Zero Hour Contract Notice Periods

If you decide to give notice on a zero hours contract role, you can use the flexibility of the contract to refuse any shifts offered during your notice period. Your employer cannot withhold any wages for hours already worked in this circumstance, even if they have added contract clauses to that effect.


UK Law Changes in 2021 on Zero Hour Contracts

At the moment you are protected under UK law and have the same rights as other workers to receive:-

  • National Minimum and Living Wage.
  • Pay For Work Related Travel During Shifts.
  • Holiday Pay & Sick Pay.
  • On Call Pay.

In 2021, the UK government has passed legislation following advice in the Good Work plan, which gives workers on zero hours contracts the right to written terms of employment from day one in a job.

Later in 2021 the Employment Bill is expected to be published. This will implement more recommendations from the Good Work Plan including:-

  • Compensation for shift cancellation without resonable notice.
  • Giving workers a right to reasonable notice of shift times.
  • Giving workers the right to switch away from a zero hours contract after 26 weeks continuous employment. The new contract would reflect regular hours worked during that 26 week period.

The aim of the planned changes is to even up the one sided nature of zero hour roles, giving workers additional rights and greater employment security.


Additional Rights For Workers Classed As “Employees”

In the world of zero hours contracts, employment status is an important factor to consider. If you work under a zero hour employment contract, you can be legally classed as either a “worker” or an “employee”. If you’re an employee, then you’re entitled to additional employment rights.

Most importantly, employees have extra protection against being unfairly dismissed by their employer or experiencing “detriment” if they:-

  • Believe their work tasks would put them in imminent and serious danger.
  • Take reasonable action with regards to a health and safety concern, such as making a complaint about an unsafe workplace.
  • Let their employer know about any health and safety concerns in the appropriate manner.

If an employee is dismissed or experiences detriment in any of these cases, the employee will have grounds for an unfair dismissal case. “Detriment” is any negative treatment that makes you worse off, such as reducing hours, bullying at work, or turning down training requests without a good reason.

For any further queries surrounding your contract and employment rights, you can receive independent and free advice from Citizens Advice Bureau in England or Wales. If you’re working in Scotland, the CAS can provide legal advice.


Can Zero Hours Contract Workers Work For More Than One Employer?

Under a zero hours contract, you are free to work for as many employers as you like. Legally, an employer cannot stop you from working for another, nor can they treat you unfairly if you do so. If you’re classed as an employee, the employer can also not dismiss you on these grounds.

Some employers attempt to put an “exclusivity agreement” in their zero hours employment contracts. However, these clauses have no legal basis. An employer cannot claim the contract has been broken if a zero hours worker looks elsewhere for work.


What Is Classed As A Break In Employment?

Another important phrase surrounding zero hours contracts is “a break in employment”. A break in employment is when a worker on a zero hours contract is not given work for a full calendar week. A break in employment can affect the worker’s employment contract.

If there is a break in a worker’s employment, then the employer has to pay them for any holiday they’ve built up and not yet taken, as well as any outstanding wages.

There are some exceptions to this, such as when the worker is off work with injury or sickness, or it’s a seasonal job without guaranteed hours. Additionally, a worker and employer may have an agreement in the zero hours contract that allows a break in employment.


Are zero hours contracts better for employers or workers?

Zero hours contracts are generally considered to be more beneficial to employers. This is because it helps them avoid paying full time contracts whilst having workers on hand whenever they need them. Zero hour contracts are particularly great for new businesses, which may not have the capital to take on full time staff straight away.

Despite the lack of guaranteed work hours, zero hours contracts can also benefit workers too. For one, their flexibility cannot be matched by any other type of contract. Workers are free to turn down any working hours they’re offered, meaning they’re never locked into any set shifts. This also allows workers to use their zero hour contract work around other jobs for extra income.

Can any business offer zero hours contracts?

Any business can choose to use zero hours contracts within its labour force. However, this contract arrangement is not always the best choice. Companies cannot guarantee that their zero hours contract workers will be available when they need them, which can make projects and operations more challenging.

Zero hours contracts are better suited to companies looking for a flexible workforce. Businesses that require delivery drivers, seasonal workers or service testers may benefit from offering zero hours contracts, for example.

48 thoughts on “Zero Hours Contracts UK – What Are They & What Rights Do Workers Have?

  1. Cc says:

    I am 17 weeks pregnant on 0 hours. Are job is mainly cleaning. We get given a rota every Friday so are never asked can you do this. I have requested that one of the jobs I am doing is 2 hard on my back and am unable to it, but they won’t take me off it. I know this is not right but don’t no who to report them to or what to do ect. I am in pain now from doing it today. We also don’t get paid travel to first job or home so you can end up driving miles for a one hour job !

  2. Jo jo says:

    I was told that because I didn’t give 2 weeks notice and gave 1 weeks notice for a paid event to go too I have to work an evening shift and an early the next day this event has beenot paid for it work in domacillery on 0 hours could I have advice on my rights they are also sending emails to say that staff are ringing in sick and are desperate for cover Thankyou Joanne

  3. Jo says:

    I’ve been in an accident at home which involved having an operation and I currently can’t work which I work for an agency so I don’t get a wage and now I’m trying to find out about benefits etc I could claim till I get the all clear from the hospital

  4. Nettie says:

    I am s single mom and have a 5 yr old who has started school full time. My job as a beautician started as a 16hr a week zero hrs, some weeks i worked 22hrs, i am claiming working tax credits and for the past 3 weeks i have only done 20hrs. I cant live on the wage and working tax credits will stop, so i have been told. I love the job i do and dont want to leave. I dont no what to do for the best. Please give me some advise.

  5. Dylan says:

    Hi i’m on a zero hour co tract at McDonalds however for atleast a year or 2 I have had guaranteed 5 shifts a week minimum. I recently had to hand in a sick note for two weeks due to having a chest infection and flu and was told if I handed the note in then shifts would be taken away from me and as stated i’m now being punished and have been given less shifts due to me being off.

  6. Kim says:

    I have worked a year with regular hours 6mths days 0700 to 1400 3days one week 4 the next and the last 6mths of which spent on nights following a pattern 36 hours every week…. now been told no work for the part time staff as want fulltime… now this is 0hour I have been forced into working a “pattern” sale 000to0800 every shift and 3 shifts is this not employment status?

  7. Rellie says:

    I work in a zero hours giving beauty treatments. I get hourly appointments each week but sometimes there are gaps in between. One day I had three appointments with one at 9.30 and one at 12.00, one at 2.30 and this is an extreme of the gaps I have. I don’t get paid for the gaps and only earn three hours pay for 6 hours work in this way. Is this legal?

  8. rellie says:

    I can but there is not enough time to fit any in, by the time I get to their house I would only have half an hour to do a treatment, pack up and get back to work. I’ve been told to read the policies in between treatments for which they will give me a half hour payment when all are read and signed for. There is at least seven hours reading there.

  9. Robin says:

    Do I have any rights as a zero hour co tract worker when I am being bullied at work. Someone has taken a dislike to me and threatened to make sure I don’t keep my job for long- what rights do I have ?

  10. Irideforlife says:

    I work for a social care company. That is three thing to refuse to pay staff if a timesheet is not given in by day 2 of the next working week. Is this lawful and what can I quote to the employer?

  11. Sissy says:

    I am a carer on Zero hours ,I had a meeting yesterday and was told the company I work for was going to stop paying for our weekly pass,also I don’t get paid for travelling in between jobs which could be up to an hour a day.I would be grateful if you could give me some advice on this. Many Thanks

  12. ACA says:

    Been working in care home 15 yrs, chose 3 yrs ago to step down as head chef, and work as Bank. Have been doing 20-25 hrs a week since 2015, change of management last summer, told head chef no bank, laid me off. Checked with our Head office HR/OPS director, no knowledge of this, and confirmed I’m still on payroll. And would be offered sickness and annual leave cover. Apparently the Manager had directed the head chef to five me no hours.. Had no work since March this year. Is this a redundancy or unfair treatment /dismissal situation? I’d appreciate advice on how I should proceed

  13. Ben says:

    hey, my manager keeps changing the hours on the rota at work. an i’ve missed a few shifts because I’ve not looked at the rota after i’ve recorded my hours. there is a sign that says rota is subject to change. but i would assume that they would have to discuss a change in hours with you before doing so. i work 30hours in customer services and do shifts that do change weekly

  14. Jools says:

    Is a zero hours conract worker entitled to overtime if they work more than 8 hrs per shift and/or weekends and into early hours of morning – catering industry? Thanks.

  15. G says:

    I have worked for a company for over a year, I have been given no contact to sign and get ignored if I ask for one? There are four of us working there and on average work over a 50hour week over 6 days. We can get a text anytime up to 11pm to tell us if there is work the next day. Lately though there has been no work for any of us and have not have any communication from them to tell us what is going on. If we request a day off we get told it’s too short notice or just no Incase any jobs come in! If for any reason one of us need a day off and actually take it off the management then throw a fit and childishly ignore you or refuse to give you work even of the work load is rediculous. We’ve tried to approach the management but it’s like talking to sulking kids!

  16. Beth says:

    I left my job last Sunday my manger and boss aren’t answering any messages. I am owed £450 on the 5th April for the work I did in March. I am worried he will not pay me. What can I do about this? Can I claim it back from him? Can I sue? Can I send him to court?

  17. Sadie says:

    If my work is cancelled at short notice within 48 hours I can still claim for the hours I would have worked. Am I legally bound to then accept other work due to original work being cancelled?

  18. Missjane says:

    My work place has closed for a refurbishment and I am a working mother 9-3 mon -Friday they r closed and have shipped us out to other places which is too far away from my children one who is still dependent on me. I have tried one shift this week which was a total nightmare trying to get to and now my child care has let me down hence cannot do the 16hr left to do this week and I have had a call from my boss telling me I have to work these and to find other arrangements for my kids which I don’t have so he has said he will tell the main boss that I have refused to work and that I should be working during the three weeks even though other employees (without kids) have the time off??? I feel like I am being bullied into working when I am the only one struggling etc and everyone else just has the time off?? I am now worried I will lose my job for saying I cannot work at another place and will attend training days and return once my place of work is back open like everyone else…

  19. Ali says:

    My husband works for a car hire company, working very long shifts, sometimes 15 hours a day and then starting very early again the next morning. He never gets a break or time to stop and eat, although half an hour is taken off his wages each day (this we worked out to 2 weeks unpaid every year!) He has also been told that unless they approve holidays (although given months of notice and booked early to get a good price) they will not pay holiday. The area manager does not care about anyone as long as they are all working as many hours as possible. What can be done? There is no time to go and look for a better job working all these hours, it seems they have no rights? If they complain, life is made very difficult or no work. .

  20. Jaymil says:

    Hi I’m a bank worker for the NHS on admin side and up till covid29 I have worked 24hours on average ever week. Since covid19 I have not worked can I be furloughed or do I have to get universal credit

  21. Red says:

    Is it legal for my employer to pay me for two hours of work when I have only worked one. This had been the case for three years. Her justification for this is the council pays her to pay us, for private care, it is not straight from her pocket.

  22. Lol says:

    Iv worked for a company for seven years we was tuped over from an other company 3 years ago Iv been on furlough pay since march. I work average 40 hours aweek. We got an email from work saying they now have no work to offer us until next march april. So has of end of August is how last pay day. Can we get redundancy money has hr have said where not entitled to statuary redundancy. Thank you

  23. Lol says:

    Hi iv worked for a company for the last 7 years and we was tuped over 3 years ago from another company. I work 40 hours plus per week weve been on furlough pay since April and now had a email from work saying that how last pay will be August has they have no work to offer me. Iv emailed hr asking about redundancy pay but they say im on a casual worker. So im not entitled to any statutory redundancy. Could you please advise me please. My job title is cafe assistant manager.

  24. Maria says:

    I am as a delivery driver in Domino’s Pizza. Every week on Thursday the manager sends schedule. The manager said that I have to work extra hours if he so decides. I refused, because he talks about extra hours 15 minutes before the end of the working day. I have small children and I plan my time according to the work schedule. The manager said that I have no right to refuse and should stay at work. Is he right? Thank you

  25. Dan says:

    Hi, In my place of work, which is a very busy pizza shop, we are given shifts (for example 3pm-8pm) but when it reaches the end of my shift I can be told that I need to stay on for another half hour/hour after my shift has finished due to it being busy. I am often reasonable and understand that it’s busy so often stay on to help but that isn’t conceivable every shift. I can’t always stay on past my finishing time but when I say that I can’t stay on I get told that I have to and I can’t leave till I’m told I can go. That doesn’t seem legal to me. Is this allowed?

  26. Millie says:

    For 8 weeks I have been covering the “weekends” of another employee, Tue/Wed 9-5. My the owner or manager always confirms this 24hrs before. On Monday I was asked to work 9-5 on the Tuesday. At 10am, my manager is contacted to not have me turn up to work for that day but I’m already on site and working. I am relieved of my days duties at 11am, when my manager arrives in site, and given 2hrs pay. Do I have any rights? What would be the proper protocol for this situation?

  27. Biggles says:

    Work for Amazon, called in to work when I arrived they say they booked too many people in and I have to go home. Just spent 2 hours and £20 getting there anything I can do?

  28. Mon says:

    I am a school driver on zero hours and only paid for hours worked in week but expected to fill up with petrol at weekends but do not get paid for this. Is that legal?

  29. Tiz says:

    Just had an email from London care our breaks are now 15 minutes from 20 minutes I’m on a zero hours but garenteeed hours working from 7.00 am to 14.45 is this leagal

  30. Filgin Veliyath george says:

    Hi
    I have signed a zero hour contract with one employer who is doing home care.
    As the online induction training is completed I feel I am not competent for this job . Can I refuse the job? Is there any consequences doing so?

    • Safe Workers says:

      Hi Filgin,

      Response for information purposes, and is not professional advice.

      Theoretically workers on a zero hour contract should be able to leave without notice as they are under no obligation to accept work offered. That means they could serve the employer notice and decline any hours offered during the notice period.

      However, in practise you need to read what the contract you have signed says about notice periods and take things from there to ensure you’ve signed a true zero hours contract.

      If you feel uncertain, your local citizens advice should be able to help. Take your contract to them so that they can read the contents and advise you about how to approach things.

  31. Adam Betts says:

    Hi
    I am on a zero hours contract and my manager has just cancelled my shift only 6 hours before I am due to start. I do not feel this is reasonable and cannot afford to miss out on the income. Is there anything I can do?

    • Safe Workers says:

      Hi Adam – this is for information only, and is not professional advice.

      Unfortunately a zero hours contract does not guarantee any working hours, so there’s not any legal recourse when a shift is cancelled. However, it would be a good idea for you to double check your work contract and see if it mentions anything about notice periods to cancel shifts.

  32. Amanda says:

    Hello,
    I’m a Community Carer on zero hours contract. I told my manager that I want to leave. Contract I signed says I have to give 4 weeks notice. I said I will hand the notice but that from next week I don’t want to accept any work and want to do zero hours. My manager said it doesn’t work like this and that I will have to do my usual hours I have done in past few months, which were every week different but usually between 45 and 55h. I don’t want to accept that as I’m about to change job. Where are my rights? Can I refuse doings these hours? Do I have to give 4 weeks notice as my contract says or can I just drop this job from day to day as I’m on zero hours contract?
    Thank you

    • Safe Workers says:

      Hi Amanda, *Not legal advice, for info only*

      If your contract only makes mention of 4 weeks notice it is likely that you will be able to do as you indicate above. A true zero hours contract will allow you to do this. The ACAS page on zero hours contracts offers clear info on this. If in any doubt at all, contact the ACAS helpline on 0300 123 1100. You can also take your contract to your local citizens advice for assistance.

  33. Emma says:

    I was on a 35hr contract for years now the company put me on a zero hour contract.I still work 35 hours.Is this right ?

  34. Toby says:

    Hi,
    I am on a zero hours contract and have been subject to continued harassment from another member of staff at my place of work over the last month or so.

    I have complained to the owner of the business several times, the final time with a statement of my intent to leave unless this was dealt with.
    This resulted in the perpertrator of said harassment receiving a verbal warning while I took my regular 2 days off work.

    After returning to work after my days off, the harassement continued unabated.

    As a result I informed my employer that his efforts to bring this situation under control had proved unsucessful, I was unable to work either effectively or happily while subject to this harassement, and as a result I would be leaving with immediate effect (after finishing my current shift).
    My employer has accepted my resignation however claims that my contract stipulates a 2 week notice period and he can deduct my pay for the last 2 weeks if I fail to honour it.

    I have responded by informing him that I am happy to provide 2 weeks notice starting from the day of my resignation, however during that period I am only prepared to make myself available for the minimum number of hours specified on my contract (zero)

    Who is in the right here?

    • Safe Workers says:

      Hi Toby – This is not legal advice. You have the right to proceed as you’ve indicated. There are very few situations where an employer has the right to dock your wages. The situation you describe is not one of them. Do contact ACAS or citizens advice if you need help to navigate this issue. Your employer should pay you these wages.

  35. Louis says:

    Hi,
    I have a zero hours contract and was confirmed a shift to work. As part of the contract I am given a lift to work at the place for that given day. Upon arrival no one showed up to take me to the shift. Am I entitled to be paid for the shift?

    • Safe Workers says:

      Hi Louis – this is not legal advice. I’d urge you to check your contract and see if it mentions your transportation arrangements. Zero hours contracts are often very much slanted in the favour of the employer, so unless there’s specific mention of compensation for such an event you may struggle. It might help to contact ACAS if you need advice about what your contract means and how you should approach this situation with your employer.

  36. Julian Martin says:

    I work in front of house hospitality. Two weeks ago I gave notice to quit (I have zero hours contract). One week in they are making my life hell. generally bullying behaviour which came to a head yesterday when the assistant manager accused me of being on drug s (in front of the whole kitchen team). I fell to bits, cried uncontrollably and went to see him later to say how hurt I was and he laughed at me. I’m not going back, have secured another job (which is why they are being horrible to me – constant bullying which has impacted my mental health). I feel I should complain to HR (even though I have left) to stop this happening to others. Can they treat me like this just because I’m on a zero hours contract ?

  37. Kira says:

    Hi,
    I am working as bank staff/ 0 hours contract. Is there a legal limit for the minimum amount of shifts you have to do in order to keep on the 0hrs contract? For example, would I need to be doing a minimum of 4 shifts a year in order to follow the contract guidelines? I thought it was accepting at least once a month but I’ve been told I’m wrong.
    Thanks

    • Safe Workers says:

      Hi Kira, the UK law covering zero hour or bank contracts is not very detailed in terms of legislating for this type of situation. This is something that should be mentioned in your employment contract, so your first step should be to check what is mentioned in there. If you are still uncertain, a chat with ACAS might help you understand your rights.

  38. Mags says:

    I’m on a zero hour contract and usually have 25 – 30 hours per week. I’ve been off sick for 3 months recovering from surgery and should have returned to work last week. I took another week off sick as I wasn’t allocated any work. After a meeting with my boss last week, I assumed I’d go back to normal hours.

    I received my work schedule for this week with 4 hours 20 minutes work. I cannot survive on £30 pay for the week. Am I able to claim unemployment money or any other benefits. I can’t claim universal credit as my husband works. I am looking for a new job as I’m not fit to do care work any longer as I have osteoarthritis and osteoporosis in my hands and I struggle to lift things e.g. kettle. I also have no grip and am in constant pain. Can you give me any advice?

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