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Focus groups on employment law for associates and practice owners

As the trade union for dentists in the UK, we’re consulting members about their opinions on self-employment status.

If you are an associate or practice owner in England or Wales and are keen to contribute your thoughts and experiences for the benefit of the profession, please share your experience with us.

We are holding three focus groups which will begin with us objectively presenting the legal differences between employment and self-employment. These online sessions will take place over a couple of hours in the early evening on 9, 29 June and 7 July 2021.

We'd like to get your thoughts on what you hear, what you've experienced and what you think would benefit the profession and patients in the future.

We would like 12-15 participants at each session, with one for associates, one for practice owners and another mixed group. We will invite you to attend one of these sessions, which will provide unbiased information about tax differences.

The pandemic has thrown a renewed spotlight on employment status with some associates feeling less secure in their roles. Potential changes to NHS contracts in England and Wales raise further questions about how to pay associates and maintain self-employment.

There have also been questions over recent years raised by legal cases as to what situations and roles are genuinely self-employment. With each court ruling, such as the recent one on behalf of Uber workers, we are mindful of protecting the associate self-employment status, but only if the profession supports that. HMRC has traditionally said that the default position in the dental sector is self-employment but has recently been raising questions, making these discussions more important than ever.