As part of the new employment law, to be debated in September, a new protective status is expected to be created for the one million independent workers involved, many of whom are auto-entrepreneurs.
It aims to get rid of the problem of workers being neither staff nor self-employed by creating a charter which recognises they have features from both sides. It will give independent workers certain rights, some of which have until now only been held by staff.
These include the right to minimum pay, non-exclusive working, professional risk protection as well as legal and administrative aid, protection over dismissal plus a compte personnel de formation training budget of €500 a year for workers earning a certain amount.
For businesses, signing up to the charter gives protection from the worker making a claim to be re-classified as an employee with all the associated social and retirement charges and complex regulation.
Although the charter is not mandatory, it gives protection for both sides creating a new intermediate employment status that could lead to the creation of more jobs and businesses in a sector which has only sprung up in recent years.
It comes a year after the reform of the employment law and is a recognition by the government that the new business model needs a new employment status and is a big step forward from the 2016 El Khomri law. It is a first in Europe to take such workers out of what has been described as a judicial no man’s land.
Auto-entrepreneurs who work either regularly or occasionally with driving or delivery companies, hairdressers or others involved in personal services are affected by the change which will ease their currently precarious prospects.