Contractors' Questions: When does my rate rise take effect?

Contractor’s Question: My contract was extended after running out in October, but I did not receive the supporting paperwork until December 1st. The contract states that my rate was increased and that the contract started on the 7th October. But my agency claims that the new rate applies only from that date when the contract was 'actioned'. Would the pay rate not apply from the date in the contract? If not, there seems less purpose than I thought to having a dated contract.

Expert’s Answer: Not knowing all the facts of your situation makes it difficult to definitively advise you in detail. Was there, for example, in fact an agreement as to when the new higher rate would start? If so, that clearly sets the date. If the contract says 07-10-2010 then that will be the date from which the new rate applies, unless of course the contract itself says otherwise. If not, then clearly there is as yet no agreement, and will not be, until and unless you negotiate one.

Overall, it sounds as though the agency has said one thing in the contract, and has contradicted that elsewhere. Or perhaps they are saying they will not start paying at the new rate until the contract is signed but then any increase will be backdated to 7-10-2010.

The expert was Roger Sinclair, legal consultant at IT contracts advisory Egos.

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