By Lauren Wilson, Trainee Solicitor.
As 2020 begins, we take this opportunity to look forward to some of the anticipated and proposed developments in UK employment law in the coming year.
- Timescales for providing written statement of terms - Legislation will come into force on 6 April 2020 which will amend the timescales for providing a statement of employment particulars to employees. At the moment, this should happen within the first two months of employment, but this will change, from early April onwards, to requiring to be provided by no later than the first day of employment. The amount of information which must be included in that statement will also increase. Early and advance preparation of employment documentation will therefore be advisable.
- Agency worker arrangements - The "Swedish derogation" which exists within current legislation and which allows employers to pay direct employees and agency workers at unequal rates if certain conditions are met, will be removed by new legislation from 6 April 2020. This will mean that the terms which would have been offered to the individual if they had been employed directly, must also be offered to an agency worker, even in respect of pay after the first 12 weeks. Agencies will have until 30 April 2020 to provide agency workers whose contracts contain such a derogation with a written statement advising that the derogation no longer applies.
- Also from 6 April 2020:
- In addition to employees’ rights increasing (as outlined above), workers will also gain the right to receive a statement of terms from day one.
- Termination payments above £30,000 will be subject to class 1A national insurance contributions.
- The new off-payroll working rules will be extended to large and medium-sized companies in the private sector, shifting the obligation to check employment status for IR35 tax purposes, and potentially to account for tax from the personal service company, to the client (the employer).
- Agencies will be required to provide agency workers with a Key Information Document including specified information about the engagement they are working in (including details of the type of contract and pay arrangements).
- The new right to Parental Bereavement Leave and Pay is expected to come into force in 2020, although a date has not yet been confirmed.
- At the beginning of 2019, we recommended that in preparation for Brexit, employers should encourage their EU national employees to consult the government’s EU Settlement Scheme guidance and take steps to maintain their right to work in the UK. Almost one year later, there remains a lack of clarity for the future as far as post-Brexit immigration status is concerned and therefore, we give the same recommendation for 2020.
We will publish updates on any forthcoming changes as the year progresses. However, if you would like to discuss any of the above changes or proposals, or you require support or advice on any employment law matters, please do not hesitate to contact the team on 0141 331 5150.