Are 'zero hour' contracts lawful & what is the law on casual contracts?

Posted in : First Tuesday Q&A NI on 6 July 2010
Arthur Cox
Arthur Cox
Issues covered:

The answer to your first question is, in short, yes. The answer to the second could take a little bit longer!

Firstly, zero hours contracts are a type of casual contract and although not legally defined, they have become the day-to-day name for a casual contract under which an employer does not guarantee to provide the worker with work and only pays the worker for the work actually done. These contracts provide businesses with a high degree of flexibility whilst aiming to incur as few obligations to the worker as possible. The practicalities of how the work is offered and accepted will vary depending on the circumstances; each employer will have its own procedure which should be detailed in

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Back to Q&A's This article is correct at 02/09/2015

The information in this article is provided as part of Legal-Island's Employment Law Hub. We regret we are not able to respond to requests for specific legal or HR queries and recommend that professional advice is obtained before relying on information supplied anywhere within this article.

Arthur Cox
Arthur Cox

The main content of this article was provided by Arthur Cox. Contact telephone number is +44 28 9026 2673 or email

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