Holiday pay: Supreme Court in Agnew increases employers’ potential liability for underpaid holiday pay

The Supreme Court has handed down judgment today in Chief Constable of the Police Service of Northern Ireland and another v Agnew and others. The judgment has significant implications for liability for underpaid holiday pay for employers, although its impact in Great Britain is mitigated by the legislation which created a two-year backstop for such …

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UK immigration update: Increases to immigration fees

  On 15 September 2023,  the UK government published changes to immigration fees that will come into effect on 4 October 2023. We have summarised the relevant fee changes below. Visa fee increases Fee category Current fee New fee Fee increase Certificate of Sponsorship (payable for all new Skilled Worker or Global Business Mobility visas) …

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High Court quashes Regulations permitting cover by agency workers during strikes

In July 2022, the Government changed the law to allow businesses impacted by industrial action to fill the roles of striking staff with temporary workers.   The High Court has now decided that the 2022 Regulations implementing this change were unlawful and, as result, will cease to have effect from 10 August 2023.   From that date, …

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Post-Brexit regulatory reform of employment law

Following last week’s publication of its policy paper “Smarter regulation to grow the economy”,  the Government has now published a consultation on retained EU employment law and a response to its consultation on reform of non-compete clauses. Consultation on retained EU employment law The consultation paper confirms the Government’s intention to retain the UK’s strong …

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Government publishes guidance on voluntary ethnicity pay reporting

UPDATE: On 13 July 2023, the government also published its response to consultation on ethnicity pay reporting, again confirming that the government will not be legislating to make ethnicity pay reporting mandatory at this stage. Just over a year after the government confirmed that it would not introduce a legal requirement for employers to publish …

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Government rejects opportunity to make menopause a protected characteristic

In July 2022, the Women and Equalities Committee published a report making a number of recommendations for the further protection of individuals affected by the menopause.  On 24 January 2023, the government published its response to the recommendations and, in a move which will be seen by many as disappointing and a missed opportunity, has …

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Fire and rehire: Government publishes consultation on Code of Practice on Dismissal and Re-engagement

The practice of so-called firing and rehiring has attracted much negative attention in recent years, leading to a promise by the government in early 2022 to create a new statutory Code of Practice for employers to follow when considering the dismissal and reengagement of employees.  Today, the government has published a consultation paper on this …

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Consultation on proposals to change holiday calculation for part-year workers (Harpur Trust v Brazel)

The Government has published a consultation paper on proposals to deal with the impact of the Supreme Court’s decision in Harpur Trust v Brazel that employers cannot calculate holiday pay for part-year (eg term time) workers as 12.07% of the hours worked. Part-year workers are instead entitled to 5.6 weeks of paid annual leave calculated …

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Hybrid/home working post-pandemic: Is it still meeting the needs of your business? Responding to flexible working requests

During 3 years of pandemic turmoil, the working patterns of many employees changed dramatically as businesses and workers responded to the unprecedented crisis situation. Now, as a new year commences, and a new post-COVID era establishes itself, many employers will want to take stock and assess whether their pandemic working arrangements still meet the needs …

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Government confirms plans for flexible working reforms

Over a year after consulting on proposed reforms to the statutory flexible working regime (see our September 2021 Be Aware article), the government has now published its response. The reforms were originally much publicised as aiming to make flexible working the default for all but, in practice, the changes fall short of this. In fact, …

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Embracing neurodiversity in business: how to support employees

In our last article, we continued our neurodiversity discussion with a focus on how businesses can make their products and services more accessible to neurodiverse customers,  and the business case for doing so.  This week, in our final article of this series, we look at legislation which impacts on neurodiversity in the workplace,  as well …

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Embracing neurodiversity in business: how to support customers

In our article last week, we explored the nature of neurodiversity, alongside reports which suggest support for those who are neurodivergent is still wanting across the UK. We also outlined some of the reasons why this is a crucial area of consideration for businesses. In the UK, obligations on businesses go further than just supporting …

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Embracing neurodiversity in business: What you need to know

Five years ago, in 2017, a Harvard Business School Professor opined in the Harvard Business Review that neurodiversity is a competitive advantage which employers should embrace within their workforces1.  The Review’s article identified that the sometimes extraordinary skills of many neurodiverse individuals were not being tapped into by employers because of the traditional way in …

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Government reverses mini-budget employment-related tax measures

The new Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt has today announced an almost total reversal of the various tax-related announcements made at the mini-budget on 23 September.  From an employment perspective the only measure to survive is the reversal of the recent national insurance rate increase with effect from next month.  This means that: No …

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