The Next Round of Employment Law Updates
Just when you thought you knew everything you needed to know about employing staff, they changed the law! Here is a summary of some of the recent changes that you need to know about.
- Tribunal penalties for employers – from 6 April penalties can be imposed on employers who lose tribunals. This could be 50% of the award between £100 and £5000 where the employer breaches the employee’s rights and where there are aggravating factors; or where the employer has not made a genuine mistake but has made a deliberate breach of the ACAS code. If you run a small business there is some leniency, but larger employers are expected to follow the new rules.
- ACAS Early Conciliation – from 6 May, early conciliation is compulsory before a claim can be submitted. The claimant must contact ACAS, who will issue an early conciliation certificate when the process is complete. As an employer, this now gives you opportunity to get early warning of a case or to settle.
- Statutory pay rates – from 6 April, maternity, paternity and adoption is raised to £138.18. Sick pay rises to £87.55 and gross pay for redundancy is £464.
- Abolition of the percentage threshold – before 6 April employers could claim back sick pay if it exceeded 13% of the employees Class 1 National Insurance in the month. That threshold has now been abolished.
- Abolition of SSP record keeping obligations – from 6 April there will be no requirement to keep specified records of dates of sickness and SSP payments. Before this there was a requirement to keep records for three years.
There are more changes proposed for later in the year, which I’ll tell about in future blogs. If you need to know how any of the changes specifically affect your business and your employees, do get in touch and I’ll talk you through what you need to know.