HC Deb 15 June 1995 vol 261 c647W
Mr. French

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what guidelines, excluding case law, are used by the Contributions Agency to determine whether a person is employed or self-employed. [28339]

Mr. Arbuthnot

Liability to pay a particular class of national insurance contribution is determined by reference to the law on national insurance, which generally distinguishes between employees and self-employed persons by reference to contract of service. However, the law does not define contract of service. The Contributions Agency has no legal power to determine employment status, but will investigate, consider and advise individuals and business as necessary. When doing so the agency relies on tests which have emerged from the case law of the courts over many years and applies these to the facts of the individual case concerned. These are the only guidelines which the agency uses formally to advise whether someone is employed or self-employed.