Considering hiring one of our user groups but unsure of the laws? Leave no stone unturned by reading our complete guide on career changer employment rights.

Is this your first time hiring a person who is often discriminated against, such as a homeless person? If so, you’ve made the right decision by double-checking the rights, regulations and responsibilities surrounding their recruitment. More often than not, there is no difference in the legality of employing any of our user groups. However, as an employer, you may have to take some extra steps.

Additionally, there is often extra financial help when attracting, hiring and employing these user groups. To read about the extra support you could receive, head over to our Funding guide.

Rights and Regulations

Here is our guide to career changer employment rights which we have tailored to each of the user groups:


There are no laws or regulations inhibiting your ability to recruit any of the 21,000 personnel who leave the military on average every year.

Check out our guide on the Benefits of Employing Ex-Military for more information.


There are no strict barriers to employing the formerly incarcerated. Currently, you are allowed to ask a candidate if they have any criminal convictions. However, there is an ongoing movement which aims to restrict employers from asking for criminal conviction information. This movement is called Ban the Box.

You can find more information on recruiting ex-offenders in our guide on Employing Ex-Offenders.

Parents Returning to Work

Hiring a returning parent follows the same rights and regulations as any regular employee. However, you should know that employees have the right to take 26 weeks of ‘Ordinary Maternity Leave’ and must take at least 2 weeks off work after giving birth.

Be sure to read over our guide on the Benefits of Employing Parents Returning to Work and our separate section on Parenthood for all the necessary information and workers’ rights.

Older Workers

It is against the law to discriminate against candidates based on their age, except where it is objectively justified. For example, if you can justify that the role is no longer possible after a certain age e.g. modelling or acting roles.

Head over to our guide on the benefits of Employing Older Workers to find out more.

Homeless People

Research has found that 42% of employers across the UK believe it is illegal to hire homeless people – this is completely false. A homeless person has the same employment rights as everybody else.

The government and relevant charities encourage employers to instil a company culture that allows their staff to be open about their financial situation. This ensures that the employee finds assistance before their situation deteriorates.

Discover the advantages of Employing Homeless People in our dedicated guide.

NEET Candidates

There are no laws, rights or regulations surrounding employing NEET candidates (Not in Education, Employment or Training) that do not already apply to hiring workers in the UK.

Redundant Workers

Workers who have been made redundant are not in any special category of employment candidates. However, there are some rules around re-hiring someone who was made redundant by your business. Re-hiring is completely legal, but you must prove that the redundancy was genuine and necessary at the time. This will help to avoid claims of unfair dismissal by anyone who was made redundant but not subsequently re-hired.

For more information on the benefits of Employing a Redundant Worker, visit our guide.

Further Equality and Hiring Advice

There are no legal barriers to employing any of our user groups. Nonetheless, there are a number of steps that charities and the government encourage employers to take. For instance, consider a candidate who has gone through a difficult period or is in the midst of a significant life transition. In this case, it may be beneficial to the company and the employee to offer less strict employment terms.

It is also important to note that the 2010 Equality Act protects many of the groups listed here against workplace discrimination. This means that it is illegal not to hire somebody on the grounds of a protected characteristic such as age or gender.

Key Takeaways

As an employer, it’s your responsibility to know and understand career changer employment rights. Refreshing a Career has all the information you need to stay up-to-date with your rights as an employer as well as career-changer working rights. Check out our Complete Guide to Recruiting a Career Changer to get started.

We also have employer guides with information and support around providing remote work and flexible hours.

Refreshing a Career’s services page has information on promoting your roles on our market-leading jobs board, creating a company profile, and more. You can also subscribe to our newsletter to stay up-to-date on all of the latest news and information from Refreshing a Career. Feel free to contact us if you have any queries.