Adults & Work

Full Time (FT) vs Part Time (PT)
VIDEO- Watch this video below to find out the differences between FT and PT contracts.

Adult working hours

You can’t work more than 48 hours a week on average – normally averaged over 17 weeks. This law is sometimes called the ‘working time directive’ or ‘working time regulations’.

You can choose to work more by opting out of the 48-hour week.


You may have to work more than 48 hours a week on average if you work in a job:

·      where 24-hour staffing is required

·      in the armed forces, emergency services or police

·      in security and surveillance

·      as a domestic servant in a private household

·      where working time is not measured and you’re in control, eg you’re a managing executive with control over your decisions

If you have more than one job

Your combined working hours shouldn’t be more than 48 hours a week on average.

If you work more than 48 hours on average, you can either:

·       sign an opt-out agreement

·       reduce your hours to meet the 48-hour limit

You can opt out for a certain period or indefinitely. It must be voluntary and in writing, signed and dated. You can cancel your opt-out agreement whenever you want – even if it’s part of your employment contract. You must give your employer at least 7 days’ notice. You may have to give more notice (up to 3 months) if you have a written opt-out agreement.

Zero hour contracts

Zero hour contracts are also known as casual contracts. Zero hour contracts are usually for ‘piece work’ or ‘on call’ work, eg interpreters.

This means:

·       you are on call to work when you need them

·       you don’t have to be given work

·       you don’t have to do work when asked

Zero hour workers are entitled to statutory annual leave and the National Minimum Wage in the same way as regular workers.