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  1. #61
    photodog is offline Lord High Commander of Upper Broughton and Gunthorpe
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    Default Re: Veteran coastguards sacked for rescuing car from cliff edge

    Quote Originally Posted by RichardS View Post
    That is a correct statement of the facts. The issue is that some organisations have employed volunteers who actually turned out not to be volunteers at all because it can be an easy line to cross.

    For example, if I were a volunteer for an organisation and, in order to ensure that they always had guaranteed cover when they needed it, the organisation decided to define certain times when it would be expected that I would make myself available, then the line has arguably been crossed and a Tribunal might well consider me to be a worker which would give me some legal protection that a volunteer would not enjoy.

    Richard
    Which tribunal would that be then?

  2. #62
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    Default Re: Veteran coastguards sacked for rescuing car from cliff edge

    Quote Originally Posted by photodog View Post
    Sorry, there is no contractual arrangement in law for volunteers. A volunteer agreement, which as you state most volunteers will sign with their organisation, does not form a contract legally.

    Volunteer agreements have no legal enforceability in the courts in the U.K.

    They may prescribe standards of expected behaviour, but these cannot be legally enforced, and the only recourse to not upholding those behaviours for either the volunteer or the organisation is to end the relationship.
    I'm afraid that's (almost) completely wrong

    Any agreement, written or verbal, between two parties forms a contract in law

    Volunteer agreements are not excepted

    The "enforceability" of that contract in the courts is a different matter and (largely) hinges on whether the wronged party can prove a breach of contract AND demonstrate a quantifiable financial loss due to the breach of contract

    Since a financial loss due to a breach of a volunteer agreement is unlikely in the extreme, the practical result is that such agreements are rarely if ever going to end up before the courts

  3. #63
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    Default Re: Veteran coastguards sacked for rescuing car from cliff edge

    Quote Originally Posted by Bru View Post
    I'm afraid that's (almost) completely wrong

    Any agreement, written or verbal, between two parties forms a contract in law
    As I understand it, a contract requires offer, acceptance, consideration and intent. What's the consideration for unpaid volunteers?
    "Seamen are always wanting to do things the proper way; and I like to do them my way."

  4. #64
    photodog is offline Lord High Commander of Upper Broughton and Gunthorpe
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    Default Re: Veteran coastguards sacked for rescuing car from cliff edge

    Quote Originally Posted by JumbleDuck View Post
    As I understand it, a contract requires offer, acceptance, consideration and intent. What's the consideration for unpaid volunteers?
    Precisely. No pay, no liability.

  5. #65
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    Default Re: Veteran coastguards sacked for rescuing car from cliff edge

    Quote Originally Posted by JumbleDuck View Post
    As I understand it, a contract requires offer, acceptance, consideration and intent. What's the consideration for unpaid volunteers?
    Their time, from the point of view of the organisation. Volunteer time has a quantifiable financial value and is therefore a consideration

    It's rather less clear the other way about but there's often one or more perqesites that have a financial value (a whole subject of scrutiny for charity trustees by itself is that!)

    A contract requires a consideration to be legally enforceable, not to exist by the way

  6. #66
    photodog is offline Lord High Commander of Upper Broughton and Gunthorpe
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    Default Re: Veteran coastguards sacked for rescuing car from cliff edge

    Quote Originally Posted by Bru View Post
    Their time, from the point of view of the organisation. Volunteer time has a quantifiable financial value and is therefore a consideration

    It's rather less clear the other way about but there's often one or more perqesites that have a financial value (a whole subject of scrutiny for charity trustees by itself is that!)

    A contract requires a consideration to be legally enforceable, not to exist by the way

    I think you need to review the basics of English contract law...


    http://www.a4id.org/wp-content/uploa...t-a-glance.pdf

    Note in particular sections C and D (par 20 and 22 in particular..)

    Volunteer agreements are not intended to be legally binding.





    But I note we are not actually talking about a normal contract for services or goods such as I would enter into with you to work on my boat for instance.. we are actually talking about a contract of employment, which has different legal minimum standards for people employed as employees within the U.K.... and these include within the principle statement pay, working hours, holiday entitlement, amongst others.... (Bearing in mind pay is also subject to legislation...)

    If the contract of employment Attempts to negate the issue of pay such as to avoid taxes or NI, It is considered an illegal contract of employment btw.....

    So it’s pretty clear I think that as there is no consideration or intent to create a contract within the MCA for its volunteers, no employment contract exists.... and if the volunteers are deemed employees, then undoubtedly they are under an illegal contract of employment, as it’s clear they are not paying tax on any renumeration or BIK.

    And if the employment contract is illegal, they have no recourse to the ET.
    Last edited by photodog; 07-07-19 at 15:58.

  7. #67
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    Default Re: Veteran coastguards sacked for rescuing car from cliff edge

    Quote Originally Posted by photodog View Post
    I think you need to review the basics of English contract law...


    http://www.a4id.org/wp-content/uploa...t-a-glance.pdf

    Note in particular sections C and D (par 20 and 22 in particular..)

    Volunteer agreements are not intended to be legally binding.
    Yep, fully familiar with all of that. And a lot more besides.

    The question of whether a volunteer agreement is or isn't intended to be legally binding is crucial and not as simplistic as that particular interpretation presents

    You could even have wording such as "This agreement does not form a legally binding contract" and find that the courts disagree

    However, we are rather getting away from the point and arguing about hypothetical and esoteric legal split hairs

    The practical reality is that provided a volunteer agreement doesn't include the obligations expected of an employee it is not subject to employment law

  8. #68
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    Default Re: Veteran coastguards sacked for rescuing car from cliff edge

    Quote Originally Posted by photodog View Post
    Which tribunal would that be then?
    I thought that you'd finally given up with this silliness. What, exactly, is what your problem?

    It's obviously the Tribunal that one would take a case to against one's employer if one were a worker or employee .... as is explicit from the context.

    Richard

  9. #69
    photodog is offline Lord High Commander of Upper Broughton and Gunthorpe
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    Default Re: Veteran coastguards sacked for rescuing car from cliff edge

    Quote Originally Posted by Bru View Post
    Yep, fully familiar with all of that. And a lot more besides.

    The question of whether a volunteer agreement is or isn't intended to be legally binding is crucial and not as simplistic as that particular interpretation presents

    You could even have wording such as "This agreement does not form a legally binding contract" and find that the courts disagree

    However, we are rather getting away from the point and arguing about hypothetical and esoteric legal split hairs

    The practical reality is that provided a volunteer agreement doesn't include the obligations expected of an employee it is not subject to employment law
    Well I think it goes beyond that, if the agreement doesn’t need the statutory minimum for employment... no contract exists... and this includes of course pay at the statutory minimum wage....

    I also think that you have this a bit arse about.... in reality it’s not about obligations expected of an employee, it’s about the the nature of the relationship from both sides, and this test of employment status is well understood... one of the key tests of course being.... how are you paid.

    If your not paid, your not an employee.

    It’s very dangerous ground for a volunteer to pursue... as it could potentially leave that volunteer with a not inconsiderable liability to hmrc.....
    Last edited by photodog; 07-07-19 at 16:07.

  10. #70
    photodog is offline Lord High Commander of Upper Broughton and Gunthorpe
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    Default Re: Veteran coastguards sacked for rescuing car from cliff edge

    Quote Originally Posted by RichardS View Post
    I thought that you'd finally given up with this silliness. What, exactly, is what your problem?

    It's obviously the Tribunal that one would take a case to against one's employer if one were a worker or employee .... as is explicit from the context.

    Richard

    So which tribunal is that then if one doesn’t have a legal contract of employment?

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