The employment contract

The written statement

The written statement is not a contract in itself but is that part of the employment contract that must be provided in writing - and in the case of a dispute - you can use it as evidence of an employee's terms and conditions.

Who is entitled to receive a written statement?

All employees - ie individuals working under a contract of service - are entitled to receive a written statement if their employment is going to last for one month or more.

They may request a written statement at any time during their employment or up to three months after it ends.

Individuals who are not employees - eg independent contractors, freelancers, casual workers and some agency workers - are not entitled to a written statement.

When to issue a new employee's written statement

You must give all the required particulars within two months of the date when the employee's employment begins.

If - during the first two months - an employee leaves the UK to work abroad for more than one month, you must give them a written statement before they leave.

Presenting a written statement

The written statement can consist of one or more documents and must set out certain employment particulars. You have to put some of these particulars in a single document, known as the principal statement.

You can set out the remaining particulars in either this document or other documents - see putting together an employee's written statement.

If the written statement is made up of more than one document, you do not have to give the employee all the documents at the same time. This allows you to put certain particulars in documents such as the employee handbook, which the employee can access and refer to when they want.

You can also download our template for a written statement of employment (PDF, 239K) which you can then print off and complete in your own time.

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