It shall apply from 1 January 2017

“Self-employed drivers” operator rapped in landmark court case

UK, Transport operator should have classed drivers as employed and paid tax, says the tribunal

A transport operator has lost its legal challenge against HMRC’s finding that its drivers should be classed as employed, rather than self-employed. With implications for all Passenger transport operators,

RS Dhillon and GP Dhillon, trading as London Goods Transport, was told by a tribunal that it should have treated its drivers as employees and paid PAYE and National Insurance contributions.

The Tribunal said that despite there being no written contracts between the operator and its drivers, managing partner Resham Dhillon was “very much the boss in the relationship”.

A hearing in July was told that the operator provided the drivers with vehicles in its customers’ liveries, but drivers were expected to provide their own protective equipment and swap shifts with other drivers if they ran out of hours or could not complete the work.

Drivers were paid a fixed amount per shift and received no other pay, such as holiday pay, other than occasional discretionary bonuses. Mr Dhillon told the hearing that the drivers could refuse work at any time and could and work for other operators if they wished.

However, the Tribunal found some continued to work for the business for four or more years with limited evidence of the drivers working for other firms. HMRC argued that the arrangement gave the partnership control over the drivers; that drivers did not have sufficient financial risk to suggest they were self-employed; and that drivers were integrated into the operation.


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