Tutoring Agencies and A+ Tutors
Not an Agency
This site is not an agency.
Employment law is complex but important as it is there to protect people. The status of this website affects all who use it. This makes it important that sites like this one state our status, justify it and explain it. We also need to explain your rights so that you can decide which service is right for you.
In a Nutshell
If you are a student
When using a tutor through this site, your rights are less than using a tutor through an agency and the same as using a tutor through the yellow pages or a newspaper advert. Your contract is with the tutor directly and you are responsible for it (although it should be provided by the tutor and is often verbal). With an agency your contract is with them and they should make the contract and your rights clear to you. This is why agencies are more expensive. Some agencies are worth the premium and some are not (see "Other Sites" below).
If you are a tutor
When receiving a student directly you are also responsible for the contract between yourself and your student. You will be expected to provide a contract and explain it to the student. You are free to set your own rates and keep all of your earnings.
Why A+ Tutors is Better Than an Agency
It costs less! A lower administrative burden means lower costs. There is no middle man to do the simple tasks that you can do for yourself.
Our Legal Status Explained
The primary purpose of A+ Tutors is to provide helpful information and advice to both students and tutors. However, like other publications it accepts advertising from workers (tutors) looking for work from an employer (students) and charges them a fee. In the UK, and most other countries, it is illegal to charge workers a fee for finding them work if this is the primary purpose of the publication/business. If this is the case then the business is classified as an agency and they can only charge the employer (student) a fee.
Agency or Not?
Many sites claim not to be agencies but, in fact, are. Essentially, it is the default legal status. Remember, a site is definitely an agency when: their primary or sole purpose is to find students for tutors; or they charge the student a fee for finding them a tutor.
It is not enough for a site to claim not to be an agency. If it fits the description of an agency than it is an agency. It is that simple. If it is an agency then its legal obligations are of a much higher standard. These obligations are complex and expensive.
If a site is just like this one then it is not an agency. However, this is rare and it is very difficult to satisfy the required condition (see above).
All websites and agencies which follow the law should clearly state their status. If they claim not to be an agency then they must justify it. Agencies should make the benefits of using them clear and justify their charges.
Use Trusted Sites
Agency status is important because if a business does not realise what they are then they are being misleading at best. At worst they are taking advantage of both student and tutor by not providing the protection and service that they are legally obliged to give. Many sites break the law or are foreign. Whether you are a student or a tutor, please use a site like A+ Tutors which is very clear about:
There is more about trusted sites in the FAQ for students.