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Are you prepared for Employment Law changes in 2013?

View profile for Howard Robson
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Employment law is arguably one of the most complex and sensitive areas within law.  With legislation changes happening on what seems like a daily basis, the rules to which employers must adhere to avoid tribunal claims whilst maintaining a productive workforce can be tricky and time consuming.  Here Employment Partner,Howard Robson, looks at some of the changes that we can expect in Employment Law throughout 2013.

“Employment legislation has been one of the key areas that the coalition government has focussed on with the stated intention of simplifying and reducing the amount of red tape that comes with handling employees,” begins Howard. “The ultimate aim is that employers will feel more confident and comfortable with the recruitment process and therefore will look to employ more people within their business, in turn boosting the economy.  Some of the changes are also an attempt to reduce the amount of tribunal claims that are brought against employers, again to build that confidence amongst employers and with 186,300 employment tribunal claims brought between 1st April 2011 and 31st March 2012*, it’s not hard to see why this is a concern for employers.”

While some of the precise dates aren’t clear, there are two stages of upcoming changes confirmed at the moment.  Howard continues, “The changes to be implemented in the spring focus around redundancy and minimum wage.  The redundancy consultation period will be reduced from 90 days to 45 days where there are 100 or more redundancies at one firm.  This change is as of the 6th April 2013, while the new ACAS guidance on collective redundancies has not got a confirmed commencement date, even though this is due during April 2013.  The final change we’re expecting in April 2013 is the consolidation of national minimum wage.”

These are significant changes that will most definitely impact all businesses across the UK, with each of them happening in the same period of time.   Howard concludes, “This is only a small piece of the puzzle when you consider all of the changes that will happen throughout 2013.  As if these changes weren't going to keep employers busy enough, the second stage of changes can be expected in the summer with updates to compromise agreements, fees to be introduced for tribunal claims and new laws around protecting whistleblowers.”

If you would like further information about the employment law changes coming up in 2013, or you’d like to discuss how to implement these changes effectively in your business, contact Howard or the Warner Goodman Commercial Team on 02380 717717 or visit the website www.warnergoodman.co.uk.

*Figures from Ministry of Justice Employment Tribunals and EAT Statistics Report, 2011-12

ENDS

This is for information purposes only and is no substitute for, and should not be interpreted as, legal advice.  All content was correct at the time of publishing and we cannot be held responsible for any changes that may invalidate this article.