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Are volunteers employees?

Thursday 23 May, 2019

A volunteer worker, who does not expect or receive any reward, is not an employee. An example of this would be someone who volunteers every weekend for a charity or community with no expectation of payment.

A volunteer who does expect or receive a reward is not necessarily an employee but there must still be a contract for service.

If an employer pays volunteers they may be considered to be an employee. However, payment does not include:

  • Reimbursement for expenses incurred whilst performing the volunteer work;
  • A koha;
  • An honoraria; or
  • Any personal satisfaction a volunteer may get from the work.

If you are unsure whether you are an employee or a volunteer, give us a call for some free advice.