Do you know what?s on the cards for Employment Law in 2013?
The Government is expected to review employers? administrative obligations in the Agency Workers Regulations in June 2013, with a view to making sure that practical arrangements are as straightforward as possible.
Unfair Dismissal Compensation
The Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill (ERRB), which is currently progressing through Parliament, will:
- give the Secretary of State power to change the limit on the amount of unfair dismissal compensation.
- change the name of Compromise Agreements to ?Settlement Agreements?. A consultation has also been launched seeking views on the introduction of a Settlement Agreement Scheme, with a new Code of Practice written by ACAS governing the use of these Agreements, guideline tariffs for the amount payable under these Agreements and a draft template Settlement Agreement?s document.
The proposal for introducing compensated no fault dismissals for businesses with fewer than 10 employees has been dropped.
The Government has consulted on reducing the 90-day minimum period for redundancies where 100 or more employees are involved as part of a collective redundancy consultation.? The Government has also consulted on the introduction of a non statutory Code of Practice that hopes to address a number of key issues affecting redundancy consultation.?? Both issues are waiting for a response.
The proposal to extend the right to request flexible working to all employees is still awaiting a response.? The Government has also confirmed that the Children and Families Bill will include measures to give parents access to an entirely new system of parental leave and pay which would see mums and dads sharing leave and pay on an equal basis beyond the first 18 weeks of a child?s life.? Expected date of implementation is April 2015.
The Government is currently consulting on simplifying and streamlining procedures for Employment Tribunals to include a review of Preliminary Hearings and withdrawal of cases.
The Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill will require claimants in an employment dispute to send information to ACAS for it to attempt a settlement, before lodging their claim.
As of 6 April 2012, employment judges have been able to hear unfair dismissal cases alone, unless they are directed to do otherwise.
The Government has published its response to the consultation on tribunal fees, setting out fees for two levels of claims. This is due to come into force next summer.
On 9th October 2012 the Government confirmed that it will remove third party harassment provisions from the Equality Act.? Amendments to the Act will be made via the aforementioned ERRB.
The Government is also currently looking at making amendments to the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 as it is concerned that businesses may see them as overly bureaucratic.? The Government has confirmed that it will consult on specific proposals by the end of 2012.
Next year is shaping up to be a busy year for Employment Law changes. For further detail on any of the above, please contact our Employment Team.