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Supervision, Direction or Control (SDC)

It is necessary to consider whether a worker is under the Supervision, Direction or Control (SDC) of their client in order to determine:

There is no legal definition of the meaning of SDC and its meaning has never been considered before any Tribunal or Court. The words, therefore, take their 'ordinary meaning'.

For the purposes of the agency legislation HMRC’s guidance shows that they consider supervision, direction and control to be defined as follows:

HMRC lists examples of control for specific workers in its Employment Status Manual (ESM). The ESM only states HMRC's view, and so these examples are only illustrative.

HMRC have published new guidance on 6 April 2016 which includes further examples.

Of particular note is that the new guidance shows that HMRC now consider that those who work within a regulatory environment, such as health care workers, social care workers and teachers, are subject to SDC.  This is because the manner in which they work is governed by regulations and somebody will have the right to supervise their work and check that their work complies with those standards. This was not included in previous versions of the Employment Status Manual.