Tania asks "My contract does not guarantee a minimum number of hours per week. Is this legal?"

Hi Tania, it sounds like you are on a zero-hours contract as you available for work but your hours of work are not specified under your contract of employment. A zero-hours contract requires you to be available for work for a certain number of hours per week, if and when required. This has been prohibited in 2018 although not for work of a casual nature, work done in emergency situations or for short-term relief to cover absences.

You are entitled to be guaranteed hours of work that reflect your normal working week. For example, if your contract of employment guarantees you 10 hours per week but for the last 12-month period you have worked an average 25 hours per week, you are entitled to be placed on a band of hours that guarantees you a minimum of 21 hours per week.

You are required to submit a request (in writing) to your employer to be placed in a band of weekly working hours. Once a request letter is submitted to the employer, they have a maximum of 4 weeks to place you in a new band.

If you feel you have been victimised for making a request for secure hours such as:

  • Demotion.
  • Transfer of duties.
  • Change of location of place of work.
  • Reduction in wages.
  • Change in working hours.
  • Other forms of coercion or intimidation.

Contact the FSU Advice Centre.