Agency Work Act
07 December 2023
On 5th December 2011, the Agency Worker Directive (AWD) was scheduled to come into force in Ireland, giving new entitlements to agency workers. This legislation, which is officially known as the Protection of Employees (Temporary Agency Work) Act 2012, was passed into law in Ireland on 16th May 2012.
WHAT DOES THE ACT MEAN FOR TEMPORARY & CONTRACT WORKERS IN IRELAND?
The Agency Workers Act provides a legal framework in which you as an agency worker are entitled to equal treatment in respect of certain basic working and employment conditions as if you were directly recruited by the client to the same job. In relation to base pay, you are now entitled to be paid the same rate as if you were directly hired by the company. Base pay consists of the following:
- Basic pay
- Shift premium
- Piece work rates
- Unsocial hours premium
- Sunday working premium (where a premium is normally paid to a direct employee)
What about Holidays?
In relation to annual leave entitlements, under the legislation you are now entitled to the same annual leave entitlement as directly hired employees in the end user organisation. This is subject to the normal terms and conditions that apply to directly hired employees (i.e. there may be a service requirement before additional leave is granted). Where the client does not provide for above statutory holiday entitlements, you will continue to accrue annual leave at the statutory rate of 20 days annual leave per annum plus bank holidays.
AM I NOW ENTITLED TO SICK PAY?
No, the Act does not include an entitlement to sick pay. You will continue to be paid for hours worked only.
WHAT IS NOT COVERED IN THE ACT?
Occupational pension schemes, financial participation schemes, sick pay schemes, BIK, bonuses, maternity/adoptive leave pay and redundancy payments are all outside the definition of pay.
WHAT ABOUT ACCESS TO INFORMATION ON JOB VACANCIES?
Agency workers are now entitled to the same access and information on job vacancies in the end user organisation as directly hired employees. You should be made aware of where such vacancies will appear (e.g. company intranet / notice boards etc.)
WHO IS NOT AFFECTED BY THE ACT?
Independent contractors, direct recruits hired on fixed term contracts and workers employed under managed services contracts are not temporary agency workers according to the Act and are therefore not affected by the legislation