Employers could be forgiven for having forgotten about some of the Employment Law changes which came into force on 6 April 2020 amidst the COVID19 pandemic. However, this is unlikely to provide a defence to any claim which might arise as a result. Below we summarise the changes which employers must action, if they have not already done so.
Written statement of terms
A written statement of terms must now be given to employees on or before the first day of employment, rather than within two months of employment starting.
In addition to the information that was already required by Section 1 of the Employment Rights Act 1996, the written statement must now also include:
- the days of the week the worker is required to work, whether the working hours may be variable and how any variation will be determined;
- any paid leave to which the worker is entitled;
- details of all remuneration and benefits;
- any probationary period; and
- any training entitlement provided by the employer, including whether any training is mandatory and/or must be paid for by the worker.
Furthermore, the right to a written statement of terms now extends to all workers, rather than just employees.
Holiday pay reference period
The reference period for determining an average week's pay (for the purposes of calculating holiday pay) has been increased from 12 weeks to 52 weeks, or the number of complete weeks for which the worker has been employed.
Parental bereavement leave and pay
A statutory right for employees to take one or two weeks off work following the death of a child under 18 or a stillbirth now applies (‘Parental Bereavement Leave’). A new statutory payment may be payable during parental bereavement leave, depending on the individual's length of service and earnings (‘Parental Bereavement Pay’).
Repeal of the ‘Swedish Derogation’
The Agency Workers Regulations 2010 have been amended to remove the ‘Swedish Derogation’. By no later than 30 April 2020, temporary work agencies must provide agency workers whose existing contracts contain a Swedish Derogation provision (which, in some circumstances, allows employers to pay contracted workers less than direct employees) with a written statement advising that, with effect from 6 April 2020, those provisions no longer apply.
Key information documents for agency work-seekers
Employment businesses must provide agency work-seekers with a key information document, before agreeing the terms by which the work-seeker will undertake work. The document must include information such as the type of contract under which the work-seeker will be engaged, the minimum rate of pay, any deductions that will be made to their pay, how they will be paid and by whom, and annual leave entitlement.
The Hatch Brenner team of Employment Solicitors in Norwich has experience in advising employers and employees across a range of Employment Law matters. Call 01603 660 811 to speak to one of our specialists.