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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 ...

How can I help my employees manage stress in the workplace?

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Almost everyone experiences some stress at work from time to time; however, prolonged stress can have an adverse effect on the health of your employees and your business. You, as an employer, have a legal duty to protect your employees’ health and...

Employment Law Case Update: Race Discrimination and Whistleblowing

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Whistleblowing and protected disclosures are becoming an increasingly important topic in the aftermath of Covid-19 and so it's important for employers to recognise when an employee may be making a protected disclosure so they can act accordingly. ...

How has Covid-19 changed Gender Pay Gap Reporting?

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Gender pay gap reporting was first introduced by the Government in 2017. Regulations require employers with over 250 employees to report the average difference in pay between men and women in their organisation. This difference is calculated based on a...

Employment Law Case Update: Constructive Unfair Dismissal and Breach of Contract

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Breaching the terms of an employees' employment contract will have serious ramifications for employers and so before any decisions are made you should ensure that your actions will not have consequences. Our Employment Law team today reviews the...

Can I suspend my employee?

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Suspension is when an employee remains employed but does not do any work or attend the workplace and there are several different circumstances when they may be appropriate. Suspensions can be used to protect the integrity of a disciplinary investigation, but...

Employment Law Case Update: Age Discrimination

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All employers know that they cannot discriminate against an employee based on their age, but did you know that you also cannot discriminate against a potential employee? Protected characteristics also apply to job candidates and our Employment Law ...

What does dismissal for some other substantial reason mean?

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As an employer, there will no doubt come a time when you need to dismiss an employee. Under Section 98 of the Employment Rights Act, there are five potentially fair reasons to dismiss an employee, which are capability, conduct, redundancy, breach of...

Employment Law Case Update: All Reasonable Steps Defence

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In Employment Law , it is not enough to simply supply training or policies for your employees; you must ensure you go one step further and ensure they are up to date and training is refreshed on a regular basis. Our Employment Law team today reviews a...

How can I support an employee if they have a substance abuse problem?

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Substance abuse remains a sensitive topic for many people despite the fact that it affects many lives across the UK. For instance, in 2017/2018 the NHS estimated that approximately 586,000 adults in England had an alcohol dependency. Substance abuse poses a...

Employment Law Case Update: Uber BV and others v Aslam and others

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In the case of Uber BV and others v Aslam and others [2021], after five years or wrangling, the UK Supreme Court unanimously decided that Uber drivers are workers and therefore entitled to certain employment rights. Our Employment Law team here...

How can I support an employee experiencing domestic abuse?

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Covid-19 has had many serious consequences on our health, economy and personal relationships, and unfortunately the resulting lockdowns arising from the pandemic have led to an increase in reports of domestic abuse . Working from home...

Employment Law Case Update: Constructive Unfair Dismissal

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Supporting all of our employees and treating them fairly and consistently forms the foundation of any employer-employee relationship, and when this fails it could lead to a tribunal claim. Our Employment Law team today review the case of Mr W...

Employment Law Case Update: Redundancy Procedure

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One of the many unfortunate side effects of the Covid-19 pandemic has been the impact on our economy and the rise in redundancies. When making redundancies in your business, it is crucial that the right procedure is followed, whether that is for...

Data protection implications regarding employees who have had the Covid-19 vaccine

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Our Employment Law team have previously discussed whether employers are able to force employees to have the Covid-19 vaccine, considering factors such as time off, consent, health and safety and the definition of a “reasonable management...

Employment Law Case Update: Sickness Absence Dismissal

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Following a fair procedure is one of the fundamental rules within Employment Law , particularly following a fair procedure that is detailed in your own policies. Our Employment Law team review the case of Mr V Rumbold v Jaguar Land Rover and what...

Are employees entitled to time off work to get the Covid-19 vaccine?

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The United Kingdom’s vaccine roll-out continues to make progress, with more than 11 million people having received their first jab so far. While many employers may be eager to have their workforce vaccinated, some may be wondering whether they are...

Employment Law Case Update: Reasonable Adjustments for Mental Health

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Mental health has always been a topic of interest for employers as they understand the nuances required to manage an employee suffering with poor mental health. Our Employment Law team today review the case of Mr A Hurle v London Fire Commissioner...

Six Employment Law cases to watch in 2021

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There are several important employment law developments employers can expect in 2021 as the outcome of various tribunal cases will be decided. Staying up to date with tribunal cases is an excellent way for employers to understand how the law is...

Employment Law Case Update: Less Favourable Treatment Due to Pregnancy

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No employee should receive less favourable treatment than their colleagues. Not only will it impact their own mental wellbeing and productivity, but it could also lead to a tribunal claim being brought against the employer, potentially resulting in...

Could Long Covid be a disability under the Equality Act 2010?

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Though the majority of people who have been infected with Covid-19 fully recover within twelve weeks, some individuals have reported experiencing Covid-like symptoms for much longer. These people may be suffering from Post-Covid syndrome, or ‘Long...

Employment Law Case Update: Sex Based Discrimination and Harassment

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Discrimination in the workplace continues to be a leading cause for Employment Tribunal claims, and some situations are easily avoidable. Our Employment Law team today reviews the case of Miss S Veitch and Miss N Sobihy v Stessa Leisure Holdings Ltd...

Can I dismiss an employee with less than two years' service without following a fair procedure?

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It is usually only after two years of continuous service that an employee becomes protected against unfair dismissal. Employers are generally entitled to dismiss an employee with less than two years service without needing to follow a fair procedure or...

Employment Law Case Update: Protected Disclosure Dismissal

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Whistleblowing, health and safety and protected disclosures are an increasing side effect of the Covid-19 pandemic, with employees raising concerns with their employers regarding the health and safety of being in the workplace during the pandemic. It...

Can I force my employees to return to the office when they have been working from home?

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With the UK entering its third national lockdown, it is clear that many employers will have to maintain homeworking arrangements well into 2021. There is hope however, that as vaccines continue to be distributed throughout the country this will be the final...

Employment Law Case Update: Indirect Age Discrimination

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As an employer, it is likely that you will be aware of the ways you can directly discriminate against an employee but how in tune are you with your practices and policies that constitute indirect discrimination. Our Employment Law team review the...

Can I force my employees to have the coronavirus vaccine?

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As we enter another national lockdown at the beginning of a New Year, the glimmer of hope that many people, including our Prime Minister, are clinging to is the roll-out of the Covid-19 vaccination. However, many employers may also be wondering how the...

Five key changes to Employment Law in 2021

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After a difficult and turbulent year many employers are no doubt hoping for a smoother 2021. However, the coming 12 months will have their own challenges and employers should be prepared. Our Employment Law team here outline some of the main changes in...

Employment Law Case Update: Religion and Belief Discrimination

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Every employer should be aware of the nine protected characteristics under the Equalty Act 2010 regarding discrimination against employees; one of which being religion or belief. Our Employment Law team reviews a case here, Higgs v...

ICO Update - Important information for employers regarding Data Subject Access Requests

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The Information Commissioner Office (ICO) has recently released updated guidance for businesses on how to handle a data subject access request (DSAR). Our Employment Law team here outline some of the main points employers should be aware of and...

Employment Law Case Update: Disability Discrimination and Dismissal

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As employers, it's vital that you follow your own procedures should you need to take an employee through a disciplinary or dismissal. Our Employment Law team today discusses the case of Mr D Walker v Old Swinford Hospital School which...

Should I let my employees work remotely from abroad?

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Over the past year, many employers and employees have realised that some jobs can be effectively done from the employee’s home. Consequently, some employees may wish to take this a step further and request to work remotely from abroad. Our ...

Employment Law Case Update: Failure to Investigate

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When faced with an employee's misconduct it is crucial that as an employer, you investigate the incident adequately, as well as any subsequent grievances that may arise from it. Our Employment Law team today review the case of Mr Lancelot Lewis...

How does furlough impact bank holidays?

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As the holiday season approaches, one question that may be on employers’ minds is how their furloughed employees will be affected by the upcoming bank holidays. Our Employment Law team discusses this here, outlining some of the rules regarding annual...

Employment Law Case Update: Age Discrimination and Retirement

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When considering a retirement age within your business, if you wish to make this a mandatory age, there will need to be legitimate business reasons for such a requirement. Our Employment Law team today review the case of Professor Paul Ewart v...

What should be included in a homeworking policy?

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The mass shift to homeworking arrangements has been one of the many challenges employers faced this past year. Many employers will have had to devise a homeworking policy without the benefit of much experience with homeworking in their workplace....

Employment Law Case Update: Breach of Implied Trust and Confidence

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Failure to support a management team without proper consultation or justification could lead an employer to more problems than a disgruntled manager. This is demonstrated in the case up for review today by our Employment Law team of Ms Gillian...

It's good to talk (sometimes): Acas Early Conciliation is changing from 1st December 2020

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In September 2020, the Government introduced amendments to the snappily titled Employment Tribunals (Early Conciliation: Exemptions and Rules of Procedure) Regulations 2014. These made changes to Employment Tribunal procedure and compulsory Acas Early...

Updated Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme Guidance - What do employers need to know?

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Update: On 3rd March 2021, Rishi Sunak announced in his Budget that furlough leave would now be extended until the end of September 2021. On Saturday 31 October, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that there will be a 4 week lockdown, including...

Employment Law Case Update: Constructive Unfair Dismissal and Appeals

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Every employer should have a process when managing dismissals with the right to appeal an integral part of that process. However, can that appeal process hamper any potential constructive unfair dismissal claim from an employee? Our Employment...

What is an interim relief order in relation to whistleblowing?

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The coronavirus pandemic has brought with it many changes in Employment Law and it has also seen an increase in whistleblowing from employees, whether that is in relation to furlough leave or employers breaking health and safety rules in making workplaces...

Employment Law Case Update: Age and Disability Discrimination

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All employers should be aware of the nine protected characteristics in Employment Law, which includes age and disability. Our Employment Law team here review the case of Walsh v Rose Medical Limited, which demonstrates how an employer should not...

Do I need to offer my employee the right to appeal if I have made them redundant?

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When planning to make redundancies in your organisation it is important that you adopt a fair procedure, which may or may not include offering the employee the right of appeal. Strictly speaking, there is no legal obligation to offer employees a...

Employment Law Case Update: Is Stoicism a philosophical belief?

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It's important for all employers to be aware of the 9 protected characteristics under teh Equality Act 2010; one of which being religion or belief. Our Employment Law team today review the unprecedented case of Mr S Jackson v Lidl Great...

What is the Job Support Scheme?

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Since publication of this article, on 31st October it was announced that a further national lockdown would commence starting on 5th November and ending on 2nd December. It was subsequently announced that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS)...

Employment Law Case Update: Redundancy and Alternative Employment

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With the furlough scheme coming to an end in a matter of days, unfortunately more businesses are facing the difficult decision of making redundancies , even with the new Job Support Scheme on offer. It is vital that if you are considering...

How do I practice positive action in my business?

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As businesses plan their future through the current global health crisis, building a strong workforce will be more important than ever. When building a team, employers should not overlook the benefits of diversity in their workforce as there is some evidence...

Employment Law Case Update: Gender-Fluid and Non-Binary Employees

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A recent case has added further to the ever-evolving situation regarding gender-fluid and non-binary employees and the protections afforded them under the Equality Act. This is an area with fast moving precedents and it’s one to watch. Our Employment...

What is the Kickstart Scheme?

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It was announced on 25th January 2021 that employers are no longer required to have a minimum of thirty placement opportunities to be able to use the Department for Work and Pensions application process. In an attempt to boost the creation of jobs in...

Employment Law Case Update: Time Spent Travelling

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A ground breaking case, which has taken four years to conclude, has highlighted the need for employers to ensure that their employees are being paid ther National Minimum Wage, and that their time working is adequately reflected to ensure this. Our ...

What are the practical considerations of bringing employees back from furlough leave?

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Update: On 3rd March 2021, Rishi Sunak announced in his Budget that furlough leave would now be extended until the end of September 2021. On 31 October, it was announced that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme would be extended until the end...

Employment Law Case Update: Foster Carers

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Employment status continues to be an important topic for employers, as demonstrated by the latest ruling for foster carers in Glasgow. Our Employment Law team here reviews the case, the ruling and what this means for employers. Two foster carers,...

What do I do if my employee is accused of a crime?

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The relationship between employers and employees is highly important and it is understandable that you will be concerned about the repercussions if an employee is accused of a crime. When faced with this, employers must be careful of the accused...

Employment Law Case Update: Mental Health

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Mental health is an incredibly important subject amongst our employees and it is vital that employers manage this with sensitivity, understanding and ensuring managers are able to spot the signs. Our Employment Law team here review the case of...

How do I select the pool for redundancy?

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If your business has to make the difficult decision to make redundancies , there is a set process you are required to follow. This will be a challenging time for both you and your employees as you face an uncertain future, but following this procedure...

Employment Law Case Update: Employment Status for Agency Workers

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Determining employment status is a tricky area of employment law and even more so with regards to agency workers. Our Employment Law team reviews the case of Angard Staffing Solutions and Royal Mail v Mr D Kocur and others, which illustrates...

Should I place my employee on garden leave?

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Garden leave (sometimes called gardening leave) is one strategy companies may use to protect their business when an employee leaves, and are regularly used alongside restrictive covenants . With many businesses facing changes in the current climate,...

Employment Law Case Update: Suspending an employee

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Suspending an employee may be an open and shut case as far as you're concerned, but you should always ensure you follow a correct procedure and don't make any hasty decisions. Our Employment Law team here reviews the case of Strothard v...

What immigration rules will apply to employment from January 2021?

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While many businesses are still focused on the current global health crisis, some employers may be looking ahead to 2021 when the transition period for Brexit is scheduled to end. When this happens, free movement between the UK and the EU will also end so...

Employment Law Case Update: Fair Dismissal Procedure

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Every employer knows that should they wish to dismiss an employee, they must follow a fair procedure otherwise they could be faced with an unfair dismissal claim in tribunal; but are there exceptions to the rule? Our Employment Law team reviews the...

What changes could be introduced under the new Pregnancy and Maternity (Redundancy Protection) Bill?

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With more people unfortunately facing redundancies this year, there is a concern from certain groups that pregnant women and mothers on maternity leave could face discrimination when it comes to the redundancy process. In light of this, the Pregnancy...

Employment Law Case Update: Direct and Indirect Discrimination

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Is your workforce a diverse one? Are you confident that your managers and team members are not discriminatory? These are two key factors to consider when running a business; our Employment Law team here reviews a case in which diversity was at the...

How do I change my employees' employment contracts legally?

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Update: On 3rd March 2021, Rishi Sunak announced in his Budget that furlough leave would now be extended until the end of September 2021. As the end of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme approaches, many employers will be considering new measures...

Employment Law Case Update: Employment Status

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Employment status has been a hot topic in recent years, and it has continued this year with the recent case of J Varnish v British Cycling Federation t/a British Cycling . Our Employment Law team reviews the case and explains the importance of...

What is bereavement leave?

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The last few months have made employers consider many situations regarding their policies and how they manage and support their employees during difficult times, including during bereavement. Bereavement leave is one way employers can support an...

Employment Law Case Update: Restructuring

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The coming months are likely to bring many changes to businesses including possible redundancies or restructuring to keep roles where possible. It is important that employers follow the right procedure when doing so making the wrong decisions or taking...

Can employers base redundancy payments on furlough wages?

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Redundancies are always a stressful time for all parties involved; employees are worried about their future and employers will want to look after those employees as best they can, as well as ensure they follow a fair and proper procedure to avoid tribunal...

Employment Law Case Update: Pregnancy Discrimination

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Knowing how to manage a pregnant employee and being aware of their Employment Law rights from the outset is vital in order to avoid a potential Tribunal claim against you for discrimination. Our Employment Law team today review the case of Jallow v...

What are my rights when offered a settlement agreement due to redundancy?

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In these difficult economic times many employees may find themselves facing redundancy. If you are offered a settlement agreement due to redundancy, it is important you understand your rights and the rights you could be waiving should you sign the...

Employment Law Case Update: Victimisation and Whistleblowing

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As an employer, if you have any concerns about the performance of an employee, it is vital that a thorough and fair investigation is carried out, and that there are no incidents of victimisation during the course of your actions. Our Employment Law ...

What are my rights as an employee when facing redundancy?

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In our current climate, businesses are having to make the difficult decisions to make their employees redundant in light of having to reduce their size, restructure, close or as the furlough scheme comes to an end. As an employee, it is important that...

Employment Law Case Update: Marital Status Discrimination

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We spend the majority of our lives at work and so it can only be natural that we form close relationships with our colleagues, occasionally even romantic ones. As an employer, you may wish to implement a policy regarding relationships at work; our ...

Is a furloughed employee entitled to a statutory redundancy payment?

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The last few months have certainly seen many changes in the world of Employment Law, particularly with the introduction of furlough leave. Many questions arose following its implementation regarding timeframes, holiday leave, maternity and paternity...

Employment Law Case Update: Collective Redundancies

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When it comes to making redundancies, even the well known brands can still get it wrong. Our Employment Law team today review the recent case of Ms T Low and Others v Jamie’ s Italian Ltd (in administration) and the importance of the...

How can I support the mental health of my employees as they return to work?

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Employers have a legal duty of care to protect the health, safety, and welfare of their employees, which extends to their mental health. As an employer, you should be aware that previous workplace strategies to support mental health may not be...

Employment Law Case Update: Whistleblowing and constructive dismissal

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Whistleblowing is a hot topic in light of the coronavirus pandemic, particularly relating to employees who have been placed on furlough leave. The case of Robinson v Mind Monmouthshire serves as a salutary reminder of how to handle whistleblowing. ...

What is flexible furlough?

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Update: On 3rd March 2021, Rishi Sunak announced in his Budget that furlough leave would now be extended until the end of September 2021. On 31 October 2020, it was announced that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme would be extended until the...

Employment Law Case Update: Discrimination and Psychiatric Harm

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Our Employment Law team here reviews the case of Royal Bank of Scotland v AB , and explain how serious a judgment against an employer can be when discriminatory treatment causes psychiatric harm. AB worked for the Royal Bank of Scotland...

Employment Law Case Update: Behaviour Caused or Affected by Disability

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Our Employment Law team here review the case of J Austin v The Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and advises how ignoring the background issues behind an employee’s pattern of behaviours led to tribunal. Ms Austin was an employee of the...

Can I claim back the Statutory Sick Pay I have paid to my employees?

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On 26 May, the Government launched the Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme (CSSPRS). This scheme was implemented to help employers of small and medium sized businesses cope with the increase in staff claiming Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) due to...

Employment Law Case Update: Disability and Work Place Adjustments

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Insensitivity towards an employee's disability can be costly for employers, as demonstrated in the recent case of N Williams v Boots Management Services Ltd . Our Employment Law team review the case and advise how employers can avoid...

Employment Law Case Update: Constructive Dismissal and Sexual Orientation Discrimination

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Discrimination is a hot topic at the moment and a recent case has highlighted how a change in behaviour towards an employee could lead to tribunal. Our Employment Law team review the case of Allen v Paradigm Precision Burnley Limited and Carl...

What are the GDPR implications for testing staff for coronavirus?

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As employers begin to open up the conversation with their employees about returning to the workplace, there are several ways that they can be providing a safe working environment for their employees; one of which being testing for coronavirus. There...

How do I calculate notice pay for an employee who has been on furlough leave?

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Update: On 3rd March 2021, Rishi Sunak announced in his Budget that furlough leave would now be extended until the end of September 2021. On 31 October, it was announced that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme would be extended until the end...

How do I carry out individual or collective redundancies?

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The coronavirus pandemic has changed the world that we live and work in and unfortunately, in spite of the level of support from the Government, it is inevitable that some businesses will be required to consider making redundancies. Our Employment Law...

Employment Law Case Update: Witness Evidence and Discrimination

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If you or your employees are required to provide witness evidence in a tribunal claim, it is also important that they are willing to appear in tribunal. This was highlighted in the recent case of T Bond v J Large t/a Lads and Dads Barbers which...

Employment Law Case Update: Fair Redundancy and Internal Candidates

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We are regularly hearing of redundancies in the news in the aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic, and it is vital that should you be considering making redundancies in your business, you carry out the process fairly and without bias. A recent legal...

Can I force my employees to return to work from furlough leave?

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Update: On 3rd March 2021, Rishi Sunak announced in his Budget that furlough leave would now be extended until the end of September 2021. On 31 October, it was announced that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme would be extended until the end...

Employment Law Case Update: Conclusive Investigations into Employee Conduct

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Workplace gossip and so called "banter" are an employers nightmare, and there is a fine line before it can become the foundations of a tribunal claim. The Employment Law team here review the case of Lawson v Virgin Atlantic Airways...

Employment Law Case Update: Contractors and Vicarious Liability

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The case of Barclays Bank plc v Various Claimants has, over a number of years, been seeking to establish whether companies are vicariously liable for the actions of independent contractors. Our Employment Law team here review the case in further...

Employment Law Case Update: Full and Fair Investigation

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Carrying out investigations into allegations of misconduct against an employee is unfortunately part of most employer's routines. The case of Leigh Andrews v St Mungo’s Community Housing Association is a good example how the past can come...

Employment Law Case Update: Racism and Sexual Harassment

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The case of Anne Giwa-Amu v Department for Work and Pensions illustrates precisely the way not to handle a grievance around racism and ageism. Miss Giwa-Amu was an administration officer working for Caerphilly’s Department for Work and Pensions....

What should I pay my furloughed employees who have just come back from maternity and paternity leave?

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Update: On 3rd March 2021, Rishi Sunak announced in his Budget that furlough leave would now be extended until the end of September 2021. On 31 October, it was announced that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme would be extended until the end...

Can I delay a start date or withdraw a job offer in light of coronavirus?

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Employers who made an offer of employment prior to the coronavirus pandemic may be considering whether a start date can be postponed or the offer can be withdrawn. There could be several reasons; you may be required to save costs if there is a...

Employment Law Case Update: Resignations and Cooling Off Periods

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When an employee hands in their notice, do you allow them to have a cooling off period? This topic was up for discussion in the recent case of Robert S Rae v Wellhead Electrical Supplies Limited . In early 2019, Robert Rae, founder and former...

Can my apprentices continue learning while on furlough leave?

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Many business are struggling to keep all of their employees, including their apprentices, working at present due to the coronavirus outbreak. As such, businesses have placed many individuals on furlough leave. Our Employment Law team here reviews how...

Employment Law Case Update: Redundancy cover for dismissal

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When dismissing an employee, it is vital that employers do so using a fair procedure and are transparent about the reasons behind the dismissal. In the case of S Sparks v DB Cleaners and Launderers Ltd, the employer used redundancy opposed to...

Employment Case Law Update: Vicarious Liability

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The case of Morrisons v Various Claimants has been one we have reported on several times as it has moved from the High Court to the Court of Appeal, and now the Supreme Court has ruled that an employer cannot be held to be liable for a data breach where an...

How do I manage employee data and employee handling of client data during the coronavirus pandemic?

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Increasing numbers of staff are working from home or away from the office which could make confidential information and personal data more vulnerable to data breaches; particularly where cyber-criminals are increasing their fraudulent scams. Data which...