Employment Law Blog
Thursday 5th January 2023
In 2015, the government introduced regulations which banned exclusivity clauses for workers and employees on zero-hours contracts. A zero-hours contract is one where the employer is not obliged to guarantee any working hours to the worker or employee, whilst the worker or employee is not obliged to accept work offered by the employer. Introducing the prohibition meant that those...
Friday 4th March 2022
Do remember that from 6 April 2022, various limits that apply in employment law change.
The limit on a week's pay for various calculations, including statutory redundancy pay and the basic award (and additional award) in unfair dismissal claims, increases to £571 from £544.
The limit on the amount of the compensatory award that can be made in unfair dismissal claims increases to...
Monday 10th January 2022
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to dramatic changes to how employers and employees work, with an overnight switch from traditional office-based working to predominantly home-based working. In light of this, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has sought to keep pace by launching a consultation process aimed at making flexible working the norm for employees.
Tuesday 6th July 2021
As the impact of Covid-19 on our daily lives reduces and steps are taken towards resuming normal working life, thoughts about topics such as managing family responsibilities and planning family holidays are starting to return to the agenda for many. Returning to the office over the summer holiday period creates its own issues, requiring costly childcare arrangements or reliance on help from...
Tuesday 9th March 2021
The Budget was announced on 2 March 2021 and the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, announced measures that affect both employees and employers. With April approaching, we also have the new statutory figures that will apply to various employment situations, including calculations of statutory redundancy pay.
Extension of the furlough scheme
Of particular note, is that the furlough scheme (officially...
Friday 26th February 2021
The question of employment status continues to develop as new cases progress through the legal system. The latest to return to court, is Uber BV and others v Aslam and others.
The Supreme Court unanimously upheld previous decisions that Uber’s drivers are to be classified as workers. This is another important judgment evolving the principles used to classify the employment status of gig...
Thursday 10th December 2020
Employers frequently decide to open negotiations over the termination of employment. For instance, there may be a possible redundancy situation or a performance problem, and the employer may prefer agreeing the termination of employment on mutually acceptable terms to implementing formal procedure. However, such discussions are not without risk.
Many people incorrectly believe that all...
Tuesday 17th November 2020
The Chancellor has recently announced that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, as discussed in our previous article, will now be extended across the UK until 30 April 2021. Guidance on how the scheme would operate during this extension was published on 10 November.
What are the key changes?
The new guidance confirms that employers are able to furlough employees who are unable to...
Monday 2nd November 2020
On 31 October 2020, the government announced the extension of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, which was due to end that same day, as part of the new month-long lockdown in England set to start on 5 November 2020.
Who is eligible?
Employers of any size, whether charitable or non-charitable, will be eligible for the scheme which will continue for another month. Officials say...
Monday 26th October 2020
Job Support Scheme – Open Scheme Update
On 22 October, the Chancellor announced that there had been changes to the new Job Support Scheme (JSS) in order to further help businesses keep on staff. The announcement has seen an increase in the amount of support available to employers compared to those discussed in our previous article.
What are the changes?
The changes are as follows:
Tuesday 29th September 2020
On 24 September 2020, the Chancellor announced the new Job Support Scheme which will replace furlough, starting from 1 November 2020, and run for six months until April 2021.
The Scheme is designed to protect viable jobs in businesses facing lower demand due to COVID-19. The employer continues to pay its employee for the time they work, but the financial burden of hours not worked will be...
Tuesday 30th June 2020
In February 2019, we published an article in relation to the Court of Appeal’s decision in the case of Wm Morrison Supermarkets plc (Morrisons) v Various Claimants addressing the liability of an employer for the acts of its employees. At the time, we commented that the appeal to the Supreme Court had much to commend it - that appeal has now been successful, providing some comfort for...
Thursday 18th June 2020
In addition to the various government schemes to protect existing businesses, employees and the self-employed during the coronavirus pandemic, the government has created a new loan scheme to support new ventures: the Future Fund. The Future Fund allows start-ups reliant on equity investment to obtain funding that they may not be able to achieve via a convertible loan from the government.
Friday 5th June 2020
In a further effort to assist businesses and individuals to ‘weather the storm’ of coronavirus, the government has extended the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) to allow applicants to obtain a second grant in respect of a further three months of profits.
What is the Scheme?
The Scheme, generally seen as the self-employed equivalent to the Coronavirus Job Retention...
Tuesday 2nd June 2020
On 29 May 2020, the government announced changes to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, which underpins the current practice of furloughing employees, and runs until 31 October 2020.
The Scheme will close to new entrants on 30 June 2020. Employers will only be able to furlough workers who they have furloughed under the scheme for a full three-week period at some time prior to 30 June 2020...
Wednesday 27th May 2020
The changes required to accommodate employees returning to the workplace will in some cases mean changing their employment contracts, for example, shift patterns, working hours or place of work.
Simply pressing ahead with making these changes risks liability. An aggrieved employee can object, work under protest and claim breach of contract to recover any resulting loss, whilst action taken by...
Friday 15th May 2020
Following updated advice given to the public in relation to COVID-19 on Sunday 10 May 2020, the government is encouraging people unable to work from home to return to work where possible. Supporting this, a “COVID-19 Secure” document has been produced by the government, providing guidance to employers, employees and the self-employed about how they can work safely.
There are guides...
Friday 1st May 2020
Times are tough for employers. Many have used the government’s Job Retention Scheme to furlough employees, whilst others have found ways to continue operating, but often with reduced workloads and falling income.
The Job Retention Scheme was introduced to provide an alternative to redundancy where businesses cannot maintain their workforce due to the coronavirus. It offers...
Monday 20th April 2020
Coronavirus has presented many businesses with less or no work, leaving those businesses with the difficult decision of what to do with their employees.
Two possible options are laying employees off (providing them with no work and no pay for a period while retaining them as employees) or placing them on short-time work (providing them with less work and less pay for a period,...
Thursday 9th April 2020
The effects of COVID-19 on the workplace continue to be addressed.
Holiday is one area that will be affected in some workplaces, especially those where holiday cannot be taken owing to the need to provide essential services or due to the workforce being reduced to critical levels through illness. The government has recognised this and made amendments to the Working Time Regulations 1998....
Monday 6th April 2020
Coinciding with Veganuary at the beginning of 2020, the Employment Tribunal ruled that ethical veganism is a “philosophical belief” and protected under the Equality Act 2010.
Background to the case
Jordi Casamitjana was dismissed by the League Against Cruel Sports after raising concerns that its pension fund invested in pharmaceutical companies involved in animal testing. Mr...
Friday 13th September 2019
The Supreme Court heard the appeal in Tillman v Egon Zehnder Limited at the end of January. The judgment has recently been handed down and has significant implications for the law of non-compete clauses in employment cases.
In an employment context, a non-compete clause is a restriction prohibiting an individual from competing with their former employer’s business....
Wednesday 11th September 2019
The Equality Act 2010 prevents discrimination on the grounds of protected characteristics – age; disability; marriage and civil partnership; pregnancy and maternity; race; religion or belief; sex; and sexual orientation.
Employers must take particular care when handling redundancies because while seeking to avoid discrimination against one employee, it is easy inadvertently to...
Friday 22nd March 2019
Employment law constantly evolves. Established concepts often take on new significance as they are re-worked and developed. A draft statutory instrument illustrates this point well, expanding the scope of three separate legal provisions over the next 15 months. Although still in draft form, some of the changes are imminent and employers need to be aware of what is proposed.
The most immediate...
Employers beware: vicarious liability applies even where an employee maliciously leaks personal data
Thursday 28th February 2019
Wm Morrison Supermarkets v Various Claimants, Court of Appeal
A recent case has highlighted the importance of safeguarding personal data. Everyone responsible for holding or processing personal data should carefully evaluate their security processes and procedures in light of the findings in this case.
Data protection laws state that employers who collect personal data must take appropriate...
Wednesday 6th February 2019
We are often asked to advise employers and employees about long term illness in the workplace.
Long term illness frequently qualifies for protection as a disability under the Equality Act 2010. This supplements any protection against unfair dismissal that an employee may have.
There is no minimum period of employment to qualify for protection under the Equality Act. Apart from protecting...
Wednesday 2nd January 2019
It is well known that, under the Equality Act 2010, individuals are protected from being discriminated against on the basis of their religion or religious belief. It may not be as well known, however, that there is a second branch of this protected characteristic - philosophical beliefs. It might be a further surprise to learn that lifestyle choices such as veganism may qualify for...
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