It looks like it is going to be a busy year for anyone who works in employment law. There’s change to come in agency workers rights, parental bereavement leave and changes to the right to have an employment statement from a new employer. Plus changes to employment status, which means who is an employee, who is a worker and who is self-employed.
Changes to agency worker rights
The contracts that allow for pay between assignments in agency work is being abolished. This is where agency workers agree a contract that removes their rights to equal pay with permanent staff working the same role after 12 weeks. From 6th April these will not be legally allowed and agency workers who have been in a role for 12 weeks will be entitled to the same pay as permanent staff.
Agency workers who are considered to be employees will also be protected from unfair dismissal or suffering a detriment if they assert rights associated with The Agency Worker Regulations.
Parental bereavement leave
In April 2020 The Parental Bereavement Leave and Pay Act 2018 is to come into force, giving employed parents the right to two weeks paid leave if they lose a child under 18, or experience a stillbirth from 24 weeks into the pregnancy. There are some eligibility criteria of course.
New right to a written statement of terms
From 6 April 2020, all new employees or workers will have the right to a statement of written particulars from the first day of employment. Currently, this applies only to those employees continuously employed for more than one month. Additional information will also be required as part of the extended right.
The right to a written statement of terms for workers and employees on day one of a new job was part of the recommendations in the Taylor report. This report into modern working practices was published in July 2017. We expect that many of the consultations that sprang up from this publication will come to a conclusion this year. Watch this space!
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