Agency Workers Regulations guide

Know your rights as a temporary worker under the AWR


The Agency Workers Regulations were introduced in 2011 to ensure that agency workers are given some of the same employment rights as their full-time counterparts who do the same work.

Widely regarded as one of the biggest shake-ups to employment law in history, the regulations were put in place to prevent companies from exploiting contractors for cheap labour. The new rules have a huge impact on the work of contractors throughout the UK, so it’s therefore crucial to know where you stand.

If you are in scope of the Agency Workers Regulations, you could be entitled to loads of additional benefits from your employer, such as increased pay, time off and sick leave. Whether or not you fall in scope will depend on if you’re a contractor, limited company contractor, or personal service company.

Because the Agency Workers Regulations can carry heavy consequences for employers, many tactics have been developed to avoid the rules. You need to know what the law actually says in order to avoid being trapped in a restrictive contract.

This handy guide goes over what the law says, helps you figure out whether or not it applies to you and gives advice on what you can do to enforce your rights.

What will you learn?

  • What the Agency Workers Regulations are and why it’s important
  • Whether or not the Agency Workers Regulations apply to you
  • How companies are trying to avoid the rules
  • How to enforce your rights


  • Agency Workers Regulations basics
  • Defining yourself as a worker
  • Defining the scope of the Agency Workers Regulations
  • Your options
  • What is an umbrella company?
  • What is the Swedish Derogation Model?
  • Impact on clients
  • Businesses avoiding the Agency Workers Regulations
  • Best options for contractors?
  • Limited companies that the Agency Workers Regulations still applies to
  • Disputing employment status
  • Other developments
  • A final thought
  • Appendix
Agency Workers Regulations guideby Nick Chowdrey Download

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About the Author

Nick Chowdrey Crunch Technical Writer

A writer and journalist with a passion for technology, politics and economics, Nick is fascinated by how the internet continues to shape modern society, particularly in the areas of business and communication. With an MA in Multimedia Journalism from the University of Sussex, Nick is well-versed in creating content across various platforms, and loves using his skills to educate, inform and entertain.