In a word, no.  There has been an interesting recent case on the meaning of “Ordinarily working in Great Britain” for the purposes of auto enrolment in an employer’s pension plan which bears thinking about.  This makes interesting reading since the tests which would result in the requirement to operate auto enrolment differ from those which would result in the individual being treated as resident in the UK for employment tax purposes, and as such require the operation of PAYE.

For auto enrolment purposes, in the case of The Queen on the application of Fleet Maritime Services (Bermuda) Limited v The Pensions Regulator, it was held that the question of whether a worker ordinarily works in Great Britain is determined by where he is “based”.  For these purposes, a base is a place from which a worker sets off at the start of a period of travel during the course  of his work, and to which he returns at the end.  To satisfy this test there had to be “a sufficient degree of regularity” in the worker’s departure from and return to such place (one trip is not sufficient). The test is determined on the basis of fact, not just the wording in the worker’s contract.

The worker’s base may be in Great Britain notwithstanding the fact that he does not actually spend very much time working here and equally it is possible that a worker may not have a base at all.

So the key point for employers is that where employees are internationally mobile there are a wide range of issues to consider, including the operation of PAYE and auto enrolment, and having ascertained a worker’s status for one purpose, the employer should not rely upon this answer for another as there are pitfalls which are all too easy to fall into.