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Can I electronically monitor my employees?

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The rise of homeworking over the past couple of years has caused some employers to consider using electronic monitoring to keep track of their employees’ activities during working hours. Methods of electronic monitoring include: ...

Can I require my employees to undergo a DBS check?

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The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) allows employers to review criminal record information about current or potential employees in order to help judge their suitability to work in certain roles. The DBS provides four different levels of criminal records...

How do I support employees undergoing fertility treatment?

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Many people struggle with fertility issues. The NHS estimates that 1 in 7 couples in the UK are faced with infertility problems. Infertility, and associated treatments, can have a significant impact on a person’s mental health: they may experience...

The 'Living with COVID-19 Plan' for employers in England

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What does the Living with COVID-19 Plan mean for employers in England? Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have often been asked how the relevant Government guidance should be applied in practice in the workplace....

How to support employees who are observing Ramadan?

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Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, and it is a sacred month of fasting, prayer, and reflection for Muslims all over the world. Muslims will not eat or drink during daytime hours and will refrain from undesirable habits such as smoking,...

What is the debate surrounding the four-day working week?

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More than 30 companies in the UK will trial a four-day working week in June 2022. The trial, coordinated by 4 Day Week Global, aims to establish if flexible working can improve productivity. For six months employees will work 80% of their usual hours with no...

What do I need to consider when implementing pay rises?

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Many employers are struggling to retain their top talent in the midst of the “Great Resignation” and some may be considering implementing pay rises to encourage employees to stay. While a pay rise may be an effective way to foster employee...

What are the recent changes to right to work checks?

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Beginning today, April 6 2022, important changes come into effect regarding how employers conduct right to work checks for their employees. This article outlines these changes and the potential consequences of failing to carry out...

Are employers legally required to provide reasonable adjustments?

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We often get asked about whether employees are entitled to make changes to their working practices, and if we make changes for one employee whether there is an obligation to do the same for others because a precedent has been set. Questions vary from whether...

Can I work for someone else during my garden leave?

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Garden leave is one method employers can use to protect their business interests when an employee leaves their employment. When an employee is placed on garden leave they may be restricted from attending work, contacting customers and performing their normal...

What is neurodiversity and why is it important for employers?

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This week is neurodiversity celebration week. This article explains what neurodiversity is, how a neurodiverse workforce can benefit employers, and how you can make your workplace more neurodiverse and inclusive. What is neurodiversity? ...

Do I need to carry out an investigation before disciplining an employee?

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If you believe that one of your employees has committed misconduct you may think that swift disciplinary action is the only appropriate response. However, rushing to impose a disciplinary sanction without a reasonable investigation may lead to a costly...

Employment Law Case Update: How to support an employee with dementia

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Our Employment Law team today reviews the case of Hutchinson v Asda Stores Ltd 2021 in which the Employment Tribunal (ET) considered the genuinely delicate question of whether an employee suffering with dementia was unfairly dismissed and subject to age...

How should I prepare for the additional bank holiday in June 2022 as an employer?

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In celebration of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, the Government has announced an additional bank holiday on Friday 3 June of this year. The bank holiday that normally occurs in late May has also been moved to Thursday 2 June 2022, creating an extra-long...

Employment Law Case Update: Holiday Pay Claims

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Our Employment Law team today reviews the the landmark case brought by Mr Smith, a worker who claimed he was owed holiday pay by Pimlico Plumbers. Mr Smith has successfully appealed against an Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) decision that his claim...

New guidance released for employers on hybrid working

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The last two years have seen various developments in the world of working with hybrid working, the practice of working partly in the office and partly elsewhere, usually at home, becoming the norm for most in 2022. The House of Commons Library...

Employment Law Case Update: Covid-19 Whistleblowing Dismissal

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Covid-19 has had a significant impact on the world of Employment Law and we are just now starting to see rulings in tribunal cases involving decisions employers made during that time. Our Employment Law team today review the case of Ms Leigh Best v...

Hiring an apprentice; eight key facts for employers

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An apprenticeship is a work-based training programme that allows the apprentice to gain a recognised qualification by completing a combination of work experience and off-the-job training. Employers may use apprenticeships to fill gaps in their workforce or...

Can I cut sick pay for unvaccinated staff?

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Several big companies such as Morrisons, IKEA, and Next have announced they will not pay company sick pay to staff who are not vaccinated and have to self-isolate due to exposure to COVID-19. This may have caused other employers to wonder whether they should...

Employment Law Case Update: Unfair dismissal for Covid-19 vaccine refusal

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Covid-19 has led to many various possible tribunal claims and today our Employment Law team discusses the case of Ms C Allette v Scarsdale Grange Nursing Home Limited 2021 which is sure to be the first of many. In this case the Employment Tribunal (ET)...

Practical steps to overcoming unconscious bias in employment

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Unconscious or implicit bias is when subconsciously held ideas and stereotypes affect how we perceive and treat the people around us. Some unconscious biases originate when we are young and become more ingrained over time. Even though many people are unaware...

Employment Law Case Update: Union Collective Bargaining

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Our Employment Law team today reviews the case of Kostal UK v Dunkley and others 2021 in which the Supreme Court considered whether an employer who was engaging in pay negotiations with a recognised trade union had acted unlawfully by making an offer...

Can compulsory retirement age ever be justified or is it age discrimination?

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Avoiding discriminatory acts should be top of the list of priorities for every employer. There are nine protected characteristics specified under the Equality Act 2010, with one of those being age. There have been some conflicting tribunal cases...

Employment Law Case Update: Sickness Related Dismissal

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All employees will occasionally need time off work for ill health and employers should be prepared for the eventuality that this is frequent or on a long term basis. Our Employment Law team today reviews the case of Mrs A Grant-Ryder v The...

How do I avoid discrimination claims when implementing hybrid working?

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While many workers who participate in homeworking and hybrid working arrangements have enjoyed benefits such as less time commuting, more time with their families, and a greater work/life balance, many are also worried that hybrid working will negatively...

Employment Law Case Update: Banter and Sexism in the Workplace

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Our Employment Law team today review the case of Anca Lacatus v Barclays 2021 in which the claimant, a junior banker at Barclays Bank, claimed sex discrimination against her boss for repeatedly using the expression ‘ birds ’ in the...

Employment Law Case Update: Pregnancy and Redundancy

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All employers should be aware of how to treat employees once they announce they are pregnant. Our Employment Law team today review the case of Mrs S Shipp v City Sprint UK Ltd 2021 and a textbook case of pregnancy discrimination in a redundancy...

The Employment Tribunal cases in 2022 that employers should be aware of

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2022 is looking to be another busy year for employment law in the courts and tribunals, with important decisions expected regarding holiday pay, vicarious liability, and protected beliefs. Our Employment Law team today reviews the key cases that employers...

What to expect in Employment Law in 2022

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It has been another eventful year in employment law, and as 2021 draws to a close our Employment Law team here look to the future at a variety of the changes employers can anticipate in 2022. Many of these changes were proposed following a Government...

Employment Law Case Update: Constructive Dismissal and Harassment

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Our Employment Law team today reviews one of the rare occasions the Employment Tribunal (ET) departed from previous case law and ruled that a constructive dismissal may, in some cases, amount to an act of harassment; the case of Ms M Driscoll v 1)...

When does a worker have the right to be accompanied by a companion?

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Many employers have policies allowing workers to be accompanied to meetings, but when do workers have the legal right to have a companion? Our Employment Law Team today examines this question and looks at some of the consequences of denying a worker this...

Employment Law Case Update: Disability discrimination and harassment

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Discrimination against an employee can take many forms; disability discrimination being one of them. Our Employment Law team today reviews the case of Lawton v Crystal Ball Limited 2021 and an employee who was humiliated and harassed owing to his...

Can I request a medical report for an employee?

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Employers may want an employee or worker to undergo a medical assessment for various reasons, but before you request one you should be aware of the employment law implications, GDPR and data protection responsibilities as well as how to act should an...

Employment Law Case Update: Unfair dismissal following racial term

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Dismissing an employee must be done in the correct manner, even if you consider the employee to be in the wrong. Our Employment Law team today review the case of Mr I Stevenson v London Borough of Redbridge 2021 where the tribunal considered...

Five important clauses to consider including in an employment contract

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Section 1 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 lists several terms and conditions which must be included in an employee’s contract of employment, such as pay, training, benefits, and holiday entitlement. However, there are many additional clauses that,...

Employment Law Case Update: Pregnancy and Maternity Unfair Dismissal

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Improper and unlawful treatment of your pregnant employees can lead to a variety of claims in the Employment Tribunal. Our Employment Law team today reviews the case of Mrs A Rodin v Dhillons Management Services Limited 2021 and an employer’s...

What will the new unpaid carer's leave mean for employers?

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Following a consultation it conducted last year, the Government has indicated its intention to introduce a new form of unpaid leave for employees with caring responsibilities. Our Employment Law team today outlines who will qualify for this new form of...

Employment Law Case Update: Automatic Unfair Dismissal

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Understanding the Working Time Regulations is a key part of your responsibilities as an employer and any breach of these could land you in tribunal. Our Employment Law team today review the case of Mrs McMahon v Heron Financial Limited 2020 and the...

Can I use Artificial Intelligence in recruitment?

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Artificial Intelligence (AI) is becoming increasingly common in employee management and recruitment. There is no universal definition of AI, but for the purposes of this article, AI refers to computers that use algorithms to analyse large amounts of data and...

Employment Law Case Update: Settlement Agreement Negotiations and Unfair Dismissal

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Settlement agreement negotiations can be long-winded and occasionally, employees can request outstanding payments are made on top of their settlement. Our Employment Law team today reviews the case of Mr P Porchetti v Brush Electrical Machines...

What are the risks of refusing a flexible working request?

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A flexible working request is any request by an employee to change their working pattern, including a change of location (for example, working from home), a different start or end time, or moving from full-time to part-time. Currently, many employees...

Employment Law Case Update: Fair dismissal with no right to appeal

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Offering the right to appeal in a dismissal is a controversial area, with some tribunals ruling that a lack of a right to appeal renders the dismissal unfair. Our Employment Law team today review the case of Mr G Moore v Phoenix Product Development...

What is indirect associative discrimination?

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In the case of Follows v Nationwide Building Society 2020, a UK Employment Tribunal for the first time upheld a claim of indirect associative discrimination. This is an important decision which could have implications for employers as to the treatment of...

Employment Law Case Update: Failure to make reasonable adjustment considered fair

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Making reasonable adjustments for an employee is an important consideration for employers regarding avoiding tribunal claims. There are circumstances where not making reasonable adjustments could be considered fair by an Employment Tribunal. ...

Employment Law in recruitment; the dos and don'ts when recruiting

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Finding and recruiting the right candidate for your business can be an arduous process and may, in some circumstances, end in a tribunal claim from an aggrieved candidate. Our Employment Law team today discuss some of the mistakes employers may make during...

Employment Law Case Update: Pregnancy Discrimination

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Data protection is such an important part of every business, and includes the data of our employees. Our Employment Law team today review the case of Mrs J Walker v South Tees Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 2021 and whether a privacy violation by a...

How can I support my employees with their mental health after Covid-19?

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One of the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic has been a renewed focus on the importance of mental health. The Office for National Statistics has found that one in five adults experienced depression in early 2021, double the rate reported before the...

Employment Law Case Update: Right to Appeal in Redundancies

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Offering the right to appeal can be a difficult decision; while it is not always a legal right, it could be considered an ethical right to allow an employee the right to appeal the decision to dismiss them. Our Employment Law team here reviwes the case of ...

What is a Status Determination Statement for IR35?

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A Status Determination Statement (SDS) is a written statement prepared by a business which states the employment status of a contractor whom they engage. As of April 2021, all large and medium sized businesses have been required by the off payroll working...

Employment Law Case Update: Racism and Harassment

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Racism in the workplace should not be tolerated and employers have a duty to ensure the proper action is taken when racist actions are brought to their attention. Our Employment Law team today reviews the case of Ms Muna Abdi v Deltec International...

Do I have to pay my employees if my business is disrupted by fuel shortages?

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With the recent fuel crisis causing shortages and travel disruptions across the UK, many employers may be wondering what their options are if employees cannot travel in to work, or if their business is affected. Our Employment Law team discusses your...

Employment Law Case Update: Indirect Sex Discrimination

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In adequate management of your pregnant employees could see you in Employment Tribunal, so it is vital that you treat your employees with the due consideration to avoid such claims. Our Employment Law team here reviews the case of Mrs A Thompson v...

What are my obligations towards employees going through the menopause?

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The experiences of women coping with the menopause at work has been in the news recently with the Guardian newspaper reporting a significant increase in the number of women who have brought menopause-related claims against their employer. Additionally,...

Employment Law Case Update: Reasonable Adjustments and Unfair Dismissal

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Finding an alternative role for an employee is one suggestion that may arise from an Occupational Health report and employers should take those recommendations seriously and work with the employee in question to find a role. Our Employment Law team...

How can I make my workplace more environmentally friendly?

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Last month, a report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change revealed disturbing conclusions about the condition of our environment. While finding that some of the effects of climate change are now irreversible, the report also said it was still...

Employment Law Case Update: Unfair Dismissal after Whistleblowing Disclosure

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Managing whistleblowing in your organisation is a fine balancing act. Understanding how to treat an employee is of vital importance to avoid a tribunal claim; however it's also important that the employee understands how to act after a...

Can I reduce the pay of my remote workers?

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Pay rates for remote workers have been in the news recently after Google announced it may cut the pay of US staff who work from home. It was also reported that a UK Cabinet minister argued that civil servants who work from home have effectively...

Employment Law Case Update: Direct Sex Discrimination and Unfair Constructive Dismissal

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Acting swiftly and appropriately when a grievance is raised is crucial to the management of the situation and to reduce the likelihood of it proceeding to Acas. Our Employment Law team to reviews the case of Mrs S Stannard v Overseas Courier...

What are my responsibilities regarding sexual harassment in the workplace?

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The Government has recently published its response to a consultation it conducted on sexual harassment in the workplace. This consultation found that workplace sexual harassment is still a significant problem in our society and in response the Government has...

Employment Law Case Update: Furlough as an alternative to redundancy

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When considering redundancies in your business, it is important that you follow the right procedure to avoid potential tribunal claims against you, including reviewing all suitable alternatives to redundancies. During Covid-19, one alternative would...

How can I encourage employee retention?

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Frequent employee turnover can be expensive for a business. It costs time and money to recruit and train someone new, and productivity remains lower while a new employee gets up to speed. High turnover can also decrease employee morale and make it more...

Employment Law Case Update: Indirect Discrimination Based on Gender and Unfair Dismissal

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Flexibility is one of the top benefits that employees are now looking for as an outcome of the Covid-19 pandemic; employers who don't consider this or follow a correct procedure could face not only losing a valued employee but also the Employment...

Can I use CCTV to record my employees?

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Though a useful security tool, CCTV can have a significant impact on individuals’ privacy and, as such, cannot be used indiscriminately. Our Employment Law team here discusses when employers can use CCTV, the rights of employees to respect for their...

Employment Law Case Update: Covid-19, Unfair Dismissal and Health and Safety

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We are now beginning to see the influx of Employment Tribunal cases arising from Covid-19 concerns; today our Employment Law team reviews the case of Mr B Gibson v Lothian Leisure 2021 in which the Employment Tribunal (ET) considered whether an employer...

How can I encourage diversity and inclusion in the workplace?

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A recent decision by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) regarding banning religious and other symbols of belief in the workplace has been criticised as a “blow to inclusion” and “opening a backdoor to prejudice.” However, many...

Employment Law Case Update: Covid-19 and Unfair Dismissal

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Covid-19 has given employers many different complications over the last 18 months and we are now starting to see Employment Tribunal claims arise from the decisions made during the pandemic. Our Employment Law team today reviews the case of Mr C...

Can I ask my employees if they've been vaccinated?

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As employees begin to return to the workplace, many employers may want to know who in their workforce has been vaccinated against Covid-19. Employers planning on asking employees for this information must ensure they have a clear and necessary reason and...

Employment Law Case Update: Unfair Dismissal and Inadequate Disciplinary Process

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Our policies and procedures within a business are the foundation of our relationships with our employees and it is vital that should a policy change, our employees are updated and supported in order to achieve any change in request. This brings us to the...

Is a Director an employee of a company?

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Directors are responsible for running a company and making decisions about its management. They have a number of different legal duties including to act in good faith, exercise reasonable care, and promote the interests of the company. Some Directors may...

Employment Law Case Update: Constructive Unfair Dismissal and Disability Discrimination

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Working with your employees who have a disability is crucial to ensure they feel supported in their role, improving their productivity levels and loyalty to your organisation, as well as reducing the risk of tribunal claims against you in the future. ...

What is a consultancy agreement?

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Consultancy agreements are used by businesses to engage the services of an individual without forming an employment relationship. Our Employment Law team here reviews the different types of consultancy agreements, their benefits and drawbacks, before...

Employment Law Case Update: Unfair Dismissal and Sick Leave

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Managing your employees while they are on sick leave can be tricky; ensuring the right level of contact to make them feel they are still part of the organisation while not being checked up on. How should employers act however if an employee on sick...

Are gender critical beliefs protected by the Equality Act 2010?

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A recent case heard by the Employment Appeal Tribunal, Maya Forstater v CGD Europe 2021 established that ‘gender critical’ beliefs, such as the belief that there are only two sexes and that individuals cannot change their sex, are protected...

Employment Law Case Update: Pregnancy Discrimination and Covid-19

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Adjusting to a new way of working over the last year has been a challenging one for employers and employees, particularly if you have vulnerable or at risk employees. Making the right decisions for their health and safety as well as their mental...

Employment Law and Covid-19 - an update for employers

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Over the past year and a half employers have had to make many adjustments and comply with ever evolving rules regarding subjects such as lockdown, furlough, and working from home. Our Employment Law team provide an update on these areas of employment law...

Employment Law Case Update: Furlough Leave and Unfair Automatic Dismissal

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Furlough leave has certainly been a learning curve both employers and employees alike and we are beginning to see the Employment Tribunal rule on certain issues. Today, our Employment Law team review the case of Mr Francesco Accattatis v Fortuna...

Should I offer my employees enhanced maternity and paternity pay?

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A recent survey conducted by XpertHR found that a majority of UK employers offer enhanced maternity and paternity pay to their employees. Our Employment Law team discusses some of the benefits and drawbacks of offering enhanced maternity and paternity pay...

Employment Law Case Update: Flexible Working Request and Sex Discrimination

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When approached by an employee with a flexible working request, it is important that as an employer, you consider the individual circumstances of each case. Our Employment Law team here review the rather unedifying case of Mrs L Hodgeson v Martin...

How can I manage workplace conflicts with my employees?

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All businesses experience conflict, but when not handled appropriately, conflicts in the workplace can lead to high staff turnover, decreased motivation, and an increase in costs for employers. A recent report published by Acas has estimated that the...

Employment Law Case Update: Reasonable Adjustments

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Making reasonable adjustments is an important part of supporting your employees, particularly if they have a disability. Our Employment Law team here reviews the uncomfortable case of Mr J Kane v Barclays Bank UK plc 2021 in which the Employment...

Top five considerations for senior employees when negotiating settlement agreements

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There are many reasons as to why an employee may leave their employment, including redundancy, poor performance, or simply a desire for change. Whatever the reason, leaving a job can be a stressful process, even for those at the top of the corporate ladder....

Employment Law Case Update: Breakdown of Trust and Confidence

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When an employee is diagnosed with an illness, it's crucial that as an employer you offer them the right support and don't discriminate against them. Our Employment Law team today review the case of Mr D Barrow v Kellog Brown & Root (UK)...

What is hybrid working and what should I consider as an employer?

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Hybrid working is a form of flexible working that allows employees to split their time between the workplace and working remotely, usually from home. Under hybrid working arrangements, an employee may have set days when they can work from home, for example...

Employment Law Case Update: Furloughed Agency Worker

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The last year has introduced us to new Employment Law terms, specifically the concept of furlough leave . This has given rise to many different questions and potential tribunal cases and today, our Employment Law team review the case of Miss K...

Important notes for employers during Pride Month

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June is Pride Month, a month dedicated to celebrating and embracing the diversity of the LGBTQ+ community. It is also a time to recognise the progress that has been made in advancing the rights of LGBTQ+ people while acknowledging the work that still has to...

Employment Law Case Update: Harassment and Discrimination

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Choosing your words carefully is important when you're managing employees and today our Employment Law team review the case of Ms K Moth v The Chief Constable of Devon and Cornwall 2021 in which the Employment Tribunal (ET) had to consider whether a...

Can I force my employees to take annual leave?

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As vaccine programmes continue in the UK and the rest of the world, many people are no doubt excited by the possibility of taking a holiday abroad this year. However, employers should be cautious that employees don’t save up their holiday days...

Employment Law Case Update: Unfair Redundancy Procedure

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Carrying out redundancies will be a sensitive matter for all concerned and it is vital that employers follow the necessary procedures and do not come to any conclusions before the relevant meetings. Our Employment Law team today review the case of ...

Can I record virtual meetings with my employees?

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Following the past year many of us are now used to conducting all of our meetings virtually on platforms such as Zoom or Microsoft Teams. While this technology has been helpful in keeping us connected, it has also made it easier to record meetings where...

Employment Law Case Update: Sleep-in workers and National Minimum Wage

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In the case of Royal Mencap Society v Tomlinson-Blake the UK Supreme Court finally settled the question of whether a worker is entitled to be paid National Minimum Wage (NMW) for the hours they spend sleeping onsite during a ‘sleep-in’...

What is the implied term of trust and confidence in an employment contract?

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A contract of employment is comprised of more than just the express terms given to the employee in the document. Employers should also be aware of implied terms, which are terms not expressly written in the contract but are implied into it by the...

Employment Law Case Update: Discrimination Based on Sex

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Ensuring a non-discriminatory workplace is one of the fundamentals of Employment Law, and when this is not provided the results can easily end up in tribunal. Our Employment Law team today review the case of Ms Eleanor Stevenson v Eden Beck Ltd and...

What are my rights if my employer goes into administration?

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Finding out your employer is going into administration can be very stressful and will likely raise many questions about the future. Our Employment Law team here discusses how employees’ contracts of employment and rights are affected by...

Employment Law Case Update: Covid-19 Unfair Dismissal

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The last 12 months have raised many different questions for world of Employment Law , with the introduction of furlough leave and additional health and safety requirements in the workplace. It is only now that we are starting to see claims of this...

Can I discipline an employee for misconduct outside work?

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Generally, the actions of our employees outside of the workplace, on their own time, is their business and should not concern their employer. However, an employee’s actions outside work may give rise to disciplinary action where they adversely...

Employment Law Case Update: Grievance and Investigations

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Properly investigating when an employee raises a grievance against a colleague is vitally important to remedy the concern and also stay out of the tribunal. Our Employment Law team here reviews the case of Miss P Newcombe v Machynlleth...

What is TUPE and how does it work?

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The Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations (TUPE) protects the rights of employees when the business or part of the business they work for changes hands. When TUPE applies, the relevant employees transfer from the original employer...

Employment Law Case Update: Discriminatory Views Led to Fair Dismissal

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When can a dismissal be considered fair if the decision is based on discriminatory views? That is the question that was asked of the Employment Tribunal in the case of Ms Seyi Omooba v Michael Garret Associates Ltd, t/a Global Artists and...

New Government guidance released for employers regarding the return to the office

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As this week we see many businesses re-open after the latest lockdown, the Government has also addressed whether employers can begin to bring their employees back to the office after they have been working from home. On 29 th March 2021, new guidance...

Employment Law Case Update: Redundancy or Discrimination

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Identifying and documenting the true reason for dismissing an employee can go a long way when it comes to defending a tribunal claim against you, and ensuring that you are not being discriminatory at any step along the way can help even further. Our ...