Agency Workers Regulations (AWR)

Agency Workers Regulations (AWR)

What are the Agency Workers Regulations?

The Agency Workers Regulations (AWR) became UK law on 1st October 2011. Their core purpose is to align the basic employment conditions (such as pay and holiday entitlement) of temporary workers with those of the people they work alongside. Some rights are granted on Day One of an assignment, whilst more significant changes (on pay and holidays) are given after a 12-week qualifying period.

Do the Regulations apply to me?

The Regulations apply to any worker who is supplied by a recruitment business to work under the supervision and direction of a third party; and who has a contract or terms under which they provide their services personally for the agency (e.g. if you work for Driver Hire on a ‘Contract for Services’). The Regulations also cover workers engaged through umbrella companies.

What does ‘Equal Treatment’ mean?

When a temporary worker completes a ‘qualifying period’ of 12 weeks (although not necessarily full or consecutive weeks – see below) with the same company in the same role, that worker must be treated as if he or she had been recruited directly to do the same job.

The worker then acquires ‘Equal Treatment’ rights, which broadly include basic pay, duration of working time and rest breaks and holiday entitlement. Maternity or paternity pay, pensions and redundancy payments are among the rights which are not included.

Day One rights

In addition to the rights gained after completing 12 weeks in the same role, all temporary workers are now entitled to certain rights from Day One of their assignment. These include access to collective facilities such as canteen, parking, child care etc, and access to information on job vacancies.

How do I get more information on AWR?

For the specific rules governing the ‘qualifying period’ – when the ‘clock’ is paused or re-started, and to view the Regulations in full, please visit

Should you wish to receive any information regarding AWR in relation to your individual assignments, please contact your local office.