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to ask if this is illegal (employment law)

(16 Posts)
dreamreckless Sun 05-Mar-17 08:59:24

It's a care company, provides care to people in their own homes. The carers working for them have to do a lot of visits.

The pay is minimum wage so £7.20 p/h. But the carers are paid per visit and most of the visits are only 15 minutes so they have to do 4 visits to make £7.20.

the company is now buying phones for every carer, to make them log in and out, so the pay is by the minute. so say if one visit takes 12 minutes not 15 they lose 3 minutes pay. This means they aren't paid travelling or any time they can't log in including if the person takes a long time to answer the door or lives up several floors in a flat.

aibu to think this must mean carers earn less than minimum wage?

Creampastry Sun 05-Mar-17 09:02:16

Travel to and from clients at the start and finish of a day is classed as working time where mobile workers have no fixed place of work (for example, care workers and installers or services in client's homes). Talk to acas.

19lottie82 Sun 05-Mar-17 09:05:03

I'm not sure if it's illegal or not but I think it's pretty standard in the care industry

dreamreckless Sun 05-Mar-17 09:12:01

it is standard from what my friend says, but I don't think many firms have so many 15 minute calls.

so for instance a bed run for firmA might be:

7:00 - 7:45 - Val Jones
7:50 - 8:50- John Smith
8:55 - 9:40 - David Parker
9:45 - 10:00 - Annie Heyes

so 2 hours 45 mins but only 4 visits whereas this firm is more like (I saw friend's rota!)

6:30 - 6:45 - Ida Bridge
6:50 - 7:05 - James West
7:10 - 7:25 - Jean Jones
7:30 - 7:45 - Edward King
7:50 - 8:05 - Brenda Brown
8:10 - 8:25 - Alan Green
8:30 - 8:45 - Rose Williams
8:50 - 9:05 - Catherine Taylor
9:10 - 9:25 - James Johnson
9:30 - 9:45 - Molly Marsh
9:50 - 10:00 - Elaine Beck

so same hours but second firm involves lot more travel and a lot more work.

sleeplessinderbyshire Sun 05-Mar-17 09:15:05

But in the first example it's if no paid travelling then it's only 1hour paid but losing 2h45 of their evening

Either option is pretty awful.

laureywilliams Sun 05-Mar-17 09:17:53

It disgusts me how badly carers are treated and how it seems to be accepted that their shitty terms/pay are just the norm.

Sorry. Not very helpful but I'd also contact acas.

bagpackbagpack Sun 05-Mar-17 09:21:14

It depends on your actual contract.

It sounds like you could be a "Gig" worker, so get paid an amount per visit, like an uber driver or delivery driver. And unfortunately not ilegal.

Pretty shit though.. especially for a care worker, who should get paid much more IMO!

dreamreckless Sun 05-Mar-17 09:21:21

sleep how do you work that out lol it's 2 hours 45 mins paid. I agree it's stupid. But if you're not going to pay people until they log in and then time them so precisely they are going to lose a lot ofmoney.

NewnessMoo Sun 05-Mar-17 09:21:29

I think it's not legal or ethical but unfortunately seems to be quite standard in that industry.

dreamreckless Sun 05-Mar-17 09:22:16

but you don't get an amount per visit. you get an amount per minute, or will do. Its formy friend by the way not me.

mrsmalcolmreynolds Sun 05-Mar-17 09:32:28

I'm not sure of the exact details but there was a case last year involving care workers in London where practices like this were held to be in breach of minimum wage requirements. I suspect though that individual care firms will argue that because what they do isn't exactly the same, the judgment doesn't apply to them. I'm not a big fan of unions but it might be worth your friend joining one if possible as this is the sort of thing they may be interested in tackling.

Astoria7974 Sun 05-Mar-17 10:04:15

Just go via supercarers & cut out the agency middleman?

MumUndone Sun 05-Mar-17 10:37:00

Sounds illegal to me. Travel time counts as work time, including to and from home. As such, you will need to be paid minimum wage across the whole time you are working, nit just when you are at clients' houses. You need to raise a grievance and if that doesn't work, take them to tribunal.

MumUndone Sun 05-Mar-17 10:37:37


phoebemac Sun 05-Mar-17 10:41:26

I think this is very dodgy, you can report them to HMRC.

sleeplessinderbyshire Sun 05-Mar-17 21:56:09

Sorry. I misread the times in the first one.

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