Employment Law Updates

The 'Employment Bill'

The government promised an Employment Bill when Parliamentary time allows in the Queen’s Speech in December 2019.  This is promised to include, among other changes that may come in to effect in 2022:

  • A new single enforcement body that will have powers to tackle non-compliance, including civil penalties of up to 20,000 GBP per worker for the breaches in relation to national minimum wage, modern slavery, statutory sick pay and holiday pay for vulnerable workers.

  • The new legislation, which will be supported by a code of practice on fair and transparent distribution of gratuities, will require all employers to pass on tips without any deductions. 

  • A new right for workers (including those on zero hours contracts and agency workers) to request a more predictable contract after 26 weeks’ continuous service.  

  • The improvement of protection for pregnant workers and those on maternity leave (and other family leave) by extending the period of protection to apply from the point the employee informs their employer that are pregnant to 6 months after the end of the leave period.

  • A new right to additional neonatal leave for parents of premature babies, or those admitted to hospital in their first 4 weeks, to up to 12 weeks’ paid time off (1 week of leave for each week spent in neonatal care).

  • A new, day one right to 1 week’s unpaid leave for unpaid carers for the purposes of personal and practical support, financial matters, personal or medical care.

  • Removing the requirement to have 26 weeks’ service before a flexible working request can be made, making this a day one right also.

Effective date: TBC