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56% of Grooms illegally employed

56% of Grooms illegally employed


June 2017

Several of the Lingfield Equine Distance Learning tutors and students are members of the British Grooms Association.

The recent British Grooms Association survey about employment contracts, saw over 700 grooms respond.

BGA said: The survey helped us identify that approximately 56% of the grooms which took part are employed illegally; this is a worrying statistic because it also has huge implications on you as an employee as well.

To help tackle the problem the BGA has launched an innovative online employment Contract Creator, helping employers to produce legal documents in five easy steps. As part of our Employers Zone they get access to this important tool completely free.

In addition the survey highlighted that a concerning number of grooms that are employed and then ‘told’ that they are self-employed; this is extremely illegal and is tax evasion and would result in large HMRC fines to the employer if prosecuted.

If you are unclear of if you are self employed or employed then click here.

BGA member Sarah Bell said, “I have worked at my current job for five years but I have never been issued with a contract. As part of my job I get accommodation and livery for my horse. The rest of my wages were given to me in cash at the end of each week, never any payslips.

I had no idea that this was illegal, or that I haven’t been paying any tax or National Insurance, and I’m actually breaking the law. The BGA has been brilliant in helping me and my boss work together and the Contract Creator has been a great starting point for that.

Although it was a tricky conversation it was better that than HMRC knocking on my door and I feel much happier knowing that my employment is legal.”

What can you do?
– If you don’t have a contract ask your boss for a meeting outside of the yard where you won’t be distracted.
– Write down your points before your meeting so that you don’t forget what you need to say. If you struggle in these situations then why not email them to your boss before hand?
– Point your boss in the direction of the Employers Zone and explain that a contract covers both employers and employees. There is now a Contract Creator available online and support for employers by calling the BGA. Or simply forward them this email.

The Contract Creator has full support from the British Equestrian Federation, British Horse Society, Association of British Riding Schools, British Eventing, British Dressage and British Showjumping who will all be supporting their members and participants to give their staff a written contract.

We can’t stress the importance of having a contract and to help spread the word we are encouraging all employers and employees to take action with our ‘Give Your Staff a Contract Week’. Please help us by sharing our social media links and read the full story here

If you are concerned, or have any questions then please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.

The BGA Team

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