Volunteers and the Law

This lively interactive one-day course brings participants up to date on the very latest requirements and developments in the key laws that impact on the rights and responsibilities of everyone involved in or with volunteering.

Many charities and community organisations rely on volunteers. Private companies and public sector bodies are also increasingly moving into this area by either offering volunteer places to unemployed people or releasing paid staff to undertake voluntary work as part of their overall corporate social investment policies and activities.

Welfare to work reforms, government announcements about the status of employees as well as a growing number of important landmark cases are changing the rights and responsibilities of both the volunteer and those who manage them.

For Whom
This workshop is for those who work with volunteers or offer volunteer roles or positions within their organisation or business. It will also be of interest and value to volunteers.

Aims and Objectives
After attending the training and participating in the live audit participants should:

  • Understand the difference between an employee and a ‘worker’
    • when a volunteer might be an employee or worker
    • the implications for employment rights, minimum wage etc
  • Understand the tax implications if volunteers are paid or receive taxable benefits
  • Understand the potential implications if volunteers who are
    • charity trustees
    • asylum seekers
    • on state benefits
    • are paid or receive certain perks or benefits as a volunteer
  • Be able to identify the risks faced by
    • their volunteers and by service users
    • members of the public and others affected by volunteers
  • Understand the steps in carrying out a risk assessment
  • Be aware of when the law requires risk assessments in relation to volunteers and others.


Workshop coverage includes:

  • Employees and volunteers – understanding the difference and the points of convergence
  • Remuneration and the National Minimum Wage
  • Reimbursement of expenses
  • Volunteer agreements
  • Recruitment and vetting
  • Equality Act and Diversity
  • Health and safety
  • Insurance
  • Welfare Rights benefits
  • Volunteer drivers
  • Volunteers from outside the UK
  • Data protection

The prevailing and expected changes around the status of the volunteer are also covered along with breaking news around case law and welfare to work reforms.

The workshop also has a built in audit of best practice in terms of recruiting and retaining volunteers. Consequently we encourage participants to bring along any appropriate policies and documents for review enabling them to leave with a clear organisational health check and a specific action plan for their own organisation.


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