Home > Ask Our Experts > Should I Have a Contract of Employment by Now?

Should I Have a Contract of Employment by Now?

By: Jeff Durham - Updated: 3 Nov 2019 | comments*Discuss
 
Employment Contract Agreement Verbal

Q.

I have recently started work and as yet have not received a contract of employment. Am I employed or still on a trial basis?

(Mr Somers, 24 September 2008)

A.

As soon as you accepted a job offer and you and your employer agreed the basic outline of your job responsibilities and you were given a start date then, in effect, you entered into an employment ‘contract’. Although the vast majority of people will have a written employment contract drawn up, there are many who simply work on the basis of a verbal agreement even though their entitlements and responsibilities are still the same.

However, a written employment contract or at least a written ‘statement of employment particulars’ setting out the main terms of your employment is a good record to have so that both you and your employer know where each of you stand. Whether it’s a formal employment contract or a written statement it should include details of your pay, the hours you are required to work, sick pay arrangements, holiday entitlement, notice periods and any information with regard to disciplinary and grievance procedures although the latter can often be found in a separate staff handbook. Without written proof, it’s often difficult to challenge any particular aspects of your employment which you may not agree with or where you’re expected to do something that was not verbally agreed to at the time you accepted the job offer. Therefore, if you’ve been working for the company for 2 months, your employer is required by law to give you something in writing which sets out the above – whether it’s a formal contract of employment or some kind of written statement.

As to whether you’re employed or still on a trial basis, that will be determined by what your employer has set out as the length and conditions of the trial period. You might find, for example, that even with an employment contract, you might still be on trial. That’s why it’s better for you to have a written copy of the terms of your employment as you won’t have exactly the same rights when you’re on a trial period as you would if you were a full member of staff, particularly with regards to your employer releasing you without notice. Although that said, if you’re on trial, you’ve no need to give them notice either if you decide to leave if that’s not been discussed and drawn up into some form of written agreement.

Trial periods are often referred to as ‘probationary’ periods after which, following successful completion, you have the same entitlements and rights as the rest of the workforce should your employer decide to take you on as a permanent member of staff.

So, if you have worked for the company for 2 months or more, your employer must give you a written contract or statement if you ask them to supply you with one.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
@JC - I think you would have to seek legal advice on this question as it depends on what the clauses on the specific contracts are in relation to breaking agreements early.
ContractsAndAgreements - 24-Nov-14 @ 10:48 AM
I have just joined the local conservative club committee and have found certain contracts with contractors to be extremely expensive.Being a non limited company can we break these agreements
Jc - 21-Nov-14 @ 6:31 PM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • Emgem
    Re: How a Landlord Agreement Works
    Would this be classed as a breach of tenancy agreement on the landlords part. In the agreement it says pets are not allowed in…
    30 March 2020
  • stone
    Re: Breach of Contract
    I employed a maid to clean and take care of my house to be paid at the end of the month;she worked for two weeks and abandoned the job and…
    17 March 2020
  • Itsme
    Re: Child Maintenance Contracts
    My ex is trying to say that if he is going to see his son then I have to do one drop or pay for one of his lifts? And I have to pay…
    14 March 2020
  • Elaine Yates
    Re: Store Agreements Explained
    Can you pay some money off a Promissory note and then borrow again against the original note For example sign a promissory note for…
    11 March 2020
  • Salpal29
    Re: What If I Don't Have a Written Contract With My Employer?
    My partner now, has a self employed oral agreement with his employer. He has worked there…
    2 February 2020
  • Rose
    Re: The Law & Verbal Agreements
    My daughter and husband bought a house with a small building plot within the boundary that was retained by the seller to build…
    28 January 2020
  • Art
    Re: Legally Binding Contracts
    I took admission for one of the beauty course in private beauty salon in London and paid half fees at the beaning and after a month…
    28 January 2020
  • Ghibli
    Re: How a Landlord Agreement Works
    Landlord changing locks and not supplying a key or emergency or temporary accomadation. This after a fire and after the fire…
    26 January 2020
  • alfie
    Re: Title Deeds: Who Keeps Them?
    no point posting questions here nobody answers!
    24 January 2020
  • Husein
    Re: Contracts and Self Employment
    I am a self employed and working in Amazon last 6 month as delivery driver through RAM distribution Company.Unexpected called me…
    10 January 2020