Annual Increase in Tribunal Awards
The Employment Rights (Increase of Limits) Order 2018 has been laid before parliament, coming into force on 6 April 2018. It contains the normal annual increases to maximum and minimum tribunal awards.Key increases are:-
- maximum week’s pay (for redundancy payments and the unfair dismissal basic award): £508 (currently £489)
- maximum compensatory award for unfair dismissal: £83,682 (currently £80,541)
New compensation limits in force from 6 April 2018
The Employment Rights (Increase of Limits) Order 2018 SI 2018/194 has been made and will increase the compensation limits and minimum awards that are payable under employment legislation from 6 April 2018. The limit on the compensatory award for unfair dismissal will rise from £80,541 to £83,682; the limit on a week’s pay for the purposes of calculating, among other things, statutory redundancy payments and the basic award for unfair dismissal, will increase from £489 to £508; guarantee pay will increase from £27 to £28 per day; and the minimum basic award in cases where a dismissal is unfair by virtue of health and safety, employee representative, trade union, or occupational pension trustee reasons will increase from £5,970 to £6,203.
The new rates take effect where the ‘appropriate date’ for the cause of action (such as the date of termination in an unfair dismissal claim) falls on or after 6 April 2018. Where the appropriate date falls before 6 April, the old limits will still apply, irrespective of the date on which compensation is awarded.
Grandparents eligible for shared parental leave and Pay in 2018
On 5 October 2015 it was announced that the government intends to extend shared parental leave and pay to working grandparents. The government hopes that the planned change will increase flexibility and choice in parental leave arrangements and support working parents with the costs of childcare during the first year of a child’s life. The government intends to consult on the issue in the first half of next year, with the legislation expected to come into force sometime in 2018.
Research by the government suggests that nearly 2 million grandparents have given up work, reduced their hours or have taken time off work to help their families who struggle with the costs of childcare. The government estimates that grandparents are contributing as much as £8 million each year in childcare costs. The government states that ‘more than half of mothers rely on grandparents for childcare when they first go back to work after maternity leave, and over 60 per cent of working grandparents with grandchildren aged under 16 provide some childcare’.
Did you find our post ‘Grandparents eligible for shared parental leave and Pay in 2018’ useful? Read more on Shared parental leave here
Keep Your Business Weatherproof with an Adverse Weather Policy
Disruption caused by adverse weather conditions can be difficult for employees and employers alike. Employers have to grapple with getting business done with a limited workforce whilst employees face the uncertainty of whether they will be paid if they have to stay at home because of school closures or just aren’t able to get into work.
Employees should ensure that they have back up plans for childcare and travel if they are reliant on public transport but in emergency situations an employee is entitled to take unpaid time off to look after their dependents, for example if their child’s school is closed and there is no other childcare at short notice.
Tips for dealing with Adverse weather conditions
- Plan in advance by having a clear written adverse weather policy. In the event of adverse weather conditions, will employees be paid if they can’t get in to work, can they make the time up or can they take a day’s holiday?
- Consider any Health and Safety implications of employees struggling to get to work, but make it clear what you expect from them in terms of getting to work.
- Consider whether employees can work from home, is your business able to offer remote working with IT so that business disruption is minimised for employees not physically able to be in the workplace?
We can advise you on how to deal with this difficult situation and draft an adverse weather policy tailored to your business needs. Please contact us to discuss further.
Upcoming changes to Employment Law 2014-2015
With a raft of changes to employment law coming up, here’s a review of the important dates to be aware of. Any other dates will be added to this calendar as the year progresses
|1st December 2014|
|Shared Parental Leave For parents of children born or matched for adoption on or after 5 April 2015 Under this new system parents will be able to choose how they share the care of their child during the first year after birth. Mothers will still take at least the initial two week following the birth, following that they can choose to end the maternity leave and the parents can opt to share the remaining leave as flexible parental leave. Also under this new shared parental leave it is proposed to allow the husband, civil partner or partner of the pregnant women the right to unpaid time off to attend up to 2 antenatal appointments.|
|Managing sickness absence|
A health and work assessment and advisory service is to be introduced, offering fee occupational health assistance for employees, employers and GPs. The service can provide an occupational health assessment after four weeks of sickness absence. Further information is available from GOV.UK – Government response to the review of the sickness absence system in Great Britain.
|Surrogate parents eligible for adoption leave|
Provided they meet the eligibility criteria parents who have a child through surrogacy will be permitted to take ordinary paternity leave and pay, adoption leave and pay and shared parental leave and pay. Both parents will also be entitled to take unpaid time off to attend two antenatal appointments with the woman carrying the child.
|5th April 2015|
|Statutory adoption leave and pay|
The statutory adoption leave will no longer have the 26 week qualifying period, and adoption pay will be brought in line with maternity pay, which will be 90% of normal earning for the first six weeks.
|Parental Leave extended to 18|
The right to unpaid parental leave will be extended to parents of any child under the age of 18 years.
|After 1st July 2015|
|After 1 July 2015 there will be a two year cap on the period over which a worker can claim a series of unlawful deductions where they relate to any fee, bonus, commission or holiday pay.|
|To be confirmed|
|Exemption for Reservists from two year qualifying period for unfair dismissal|
Employees who are reservists will be exempted from the two year qualifying period for bring an unfair dismissal claim where the reason for dismissal is the employee’s reservists service.
Higher cost of holiday pay for employers
Non-guaranteed overtime must be included in the calculation of holiday pay. An Employment Appeal Tribunal judgment has potentially major implications for employers in respect of both employees and workers by clarifying that:
- the Working Time Directive (WTD) requires non-guaranteed overtime, ie overtime that the employer is not obliged to provide but which, if the employer offers it, the employee is contractually obliged to perform, to be included in the calculation of holiday pay
- the Working Time Regulations 1998 (WTR 1998) can and should be interpreted to allow the inclusion of this overtime pay to be included in respect of a worker’s entitlement to the four weeks’ paid holiday (which derives from the WTD) but not in respect of the additional 1.6 weeks’ paid annual leave provided for only in domestic legislation
- a worker will not be able to bring a claim that an underpayment is part of a ‘series of deductions’ (ie to fall within the more generous time limit provisions for an unlawful deduction from wages claim) where there is a gap between deductions of more than three months — this aspect of the judgment perhaps has the greatest impact as it is likely to significantly limit the extent to which workers can make retrospective claims for any underpaid element of holiday pay (or indeed for unlawful deductions of other types)
Update: Tribunal award increase
From 6th April 2014 the maximum compensatory award given by an Employment Tribunal will be increased from £74,200 to £76,574 subject to the limit of one year’s pay if this is a lesser amount. It also increases the maximum for a ‘week’s pay’ in assessing a basic award and a statutory redundancy payment from £450 to £464.
July 29th 2013 Changes to employment law
As of today (July 29th 2013) the following changes to UK employment law apply:
- Compromise agreements are to be known as Settlement Agreements.
- Tribunal fees are payable from today unless you are eligible to a fee remission.
Employment Tribunal Fees
From 29 July anyone wishing to make a claim in the Employment Tribunal or lodging an appeal in the EAT will need to pay a fee, unless they are able to obtain an exemption.
Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)
On 1 December 2012, the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) merged to form the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).
The following changes to terminology have resulted:
- A standard CRB check has become a standard DBS check.
- An enhanced CRB check has become an enhanced DBS check.
- An enhanced CRB check with Barred List check has become an enhanced check for regulated activity.
Key dates relevant to the operation of the new service include:
- Since 28 March 2013, only DBS application forms have been processed.
- Since 1 December 2012, DBS certificates have been issued for all completed criminal record checks. However, CRB certificates that had already been issued remain valid.
DBS has announced that the new “Update Service” will be launched this summer. This new service will enable individuals to register once for a DBS check which will then be automatically updated and available for organisations to check.