Business tax – guidance

Employment Status Indicator

Use this tool to check the employment status of an individual or group of workers to see if they are employed or self-employed.

Introduction

The Employment Status Indicator (ESI) tool enables you to check the employment status of an individual or group of workers - that is, whether they’re employed or self-employed for tax, National Insurance contributions or VAT.

You can find detailed guidance on employment status for tax and National Insurance contributions purposes in HM Revenue and Customs’ (HMRC) Employment Status Manual. It includes the employment status indicators based on case law which HMRC use to determine employment status.

Who can use the tool

The ESI tool can help you if you’re:

  • someone who takes on workers such as an employer or contractor
  • an individual worker

You can’t use this tool to check the employment status of:

  • company directors and other individuals who hold office
  • agency workers
  • anyone providing services through an intermediary – referred to as IR35 arrangements

Access the ESI tool and further guidance