How to determine whether someone is employed or self-employed
Use of a particular “label” e.g. “freelancer” or “sole trader”, does not
determine that a worker is self-employed rather than employed. The legal
status is instead determined by the reality of the relationship with the
There will be many cases where it will not be easy to decide whether a
worker is an employee or self-employed. The essential question to decide is
whether, in carrying out work for a person / organisation, the worker is
carrying on a business. Ultimately it is for a court or tribunal to decide.
We have set out in the
Guidance Note: Employment, Self-employment, and IR35
a list of various indicators of (a) employment as opposed to
self-employment; and (b) self-employment as opposed to employment, which we
suggest you consider.