Employment Contract Rules Changing In April

In Bar Business

On April 6th a number of changes to employee contracts come into place which you need to be aware of.

In December 2018 the government published its Good Work Plan, several of the areas laid out in this come into effect this year. Most notable is the changes to ‘section 1 statements’ in relation to anyone starting employment on, or after, April 6th 2020.

Basically, it means your employment contracts need to be changed to reflect the new legislation. There are a couple of key points for this:

  • Firstly, whilst it applies to anyone starting on, or after, April 6th any existing employee can ask for their contract to be updated must have the new one supplied, equally any employee whose contract ends after 6th April must have their new one supplied in line with the new legislation.
  • It is also worth noting that these contracts will now need to be supplied to workers as well as employees.
  • Most of the information needs to be supplied in a single document on, or before, the date their employment starts.

So what needs to be in these contracts? Well in the single document, also known as the principle statement, the following has traditionally needed to be included:

  • The names of the employer and employee.
  • The date the employment starts and the date the employee’s period of continuous employment began. (Although, for anyone starting work on or after 6 April 2020, the date of commencement of continuous employment only needs to be given to an employee, not a worker.)
  • Pay (or method of calculating it) and interval of payment.
  • Hours of work, including normal working hours.
  • Holiday entitlement and holiday pay.
  • The employee’s job title or a brief description of the work.
  • Place of work.
  • A person to whom the employee can appeal if they are dissatisfied with any disciplinary decision relating to them or any decision to dismiss them.
  • A person to whom the employee can apply for the purpose of seeking redress of any grievance relating to the employment and the manner in which any such application should be made.

Added to this, after 6th April 2020, it now needs to also include:

  • The days of the week the worker is required to work and whether working hours or days may be variable, with details of how they may vary.
  • Any other benefits provided by the employer.
  • Any probationary period, including any conditions and its duration.
  • Any training entitlement provided by the employer, any part of that entitlement which the worker is required to complete and any other required training in respect of which the employer will not bear the cost.

Previously the following can have been provided in a separate document, after 6th April, all of this needs to be provided in the principle document:

  • The notice periods for termination by either side, subject to the specific provisions referred to below.
  • Terms as to length of temporary or fixed-term work.
  • Terms related to work outside the UK for a period of more than one month.

After the principle statement there is other information which can be included in supplementary documents or in ‘reasonably accessible documents’. Whilst there is no actual definition pertaining to what ‘reasonably accessible documents’ are, the general consensus is they have to be in a staff handbook, on staff noticeboards or a centralised online document that everyone has access too. Wherever they live it needs to be referred to in the principle statement. These points are:

  • Terms relating to absence due to incapacity and sick pay.
  • The notice periods for termination by either side, subject to the specific provisions referred to below.
  • Information about disciplinary and grievance procedures (although certain information must be given in the principal statement in any case).
  • Terms as to pensions and pension schemes.
  • Particulars of any training provided by the employer.
  • Particulars of any other paid leave (other than provisions relating to holiday and sick pay).
  • Terms related to work outside the UK for a period of more than one month.
  • Terms as to length of temporary or fixed-term work.
  • Details of any collective agreements directly affecting the employment.

All of the above needs to be supplied to the employee on, or before, their first day of work with the exception of the following which can be provided in instalments up to 2 months after the start of employment:

  • Terms as to pensions and pension schemes.
    Details of any collective agreements directly affecting the employment.
  • Details of any training provided by the employer.
  • A note giving certain information about disciplinary and grievance procedures (although certain information must be given in the principal statement in any case).

Well I hope that was as fascinating to read as it was to write. Basically, after 6th April you will need new employment contracts. You can amend the ones you have using the information above or you can purchase templates from employment lawyers.

 

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