Zero Hours Contracts and Dismissal – What is the Law?

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There has been a massive rise in the use of zero hours contracts over the last few years. These are contracts where workers are given no set number of hours and effectively allow employers to hire staff with no guarantee of regular work, or in some cases work at all.

Under a zero hours contract workers will have the same rights as those workers with regular hours but there is no obligation on employers to offer work, or for workers to accept any hours they are offered.

New regulations in relation to zero hours contracts came into force in 2015 which affected a number of elements of these contracts, including dismissal.

Under the new Exclusivity Terms in Zero Hours Contract (Redress) Regulations 2015 any dismissal of a worker employer under a zero hours contract is automatically unfair if that contract prohibits the worker from working for another employer and that is the principle reason for the dismissal

For further information on zero hours contracts and all other aspects of employment law please contact Elaine Smith on 01903 229948 or


The information contained in this article is for general guidance only and is not intended to be legal advice. Professional advice should always be taken on the application of the law in any particular situation.