What is on the horizon for employment law in 2017 and how can employers prepare?

2016 saw a lot of press coverage on the Uber decision which held that two of Uber’s drivers were ‘workers’, meaning that they had certain entitlements including the right to paid holiday and the right to receive the national minimum wage.


2016 saw a lot of press coverage on the Uber decision which held that two of Uber’s drivers were ‘workers’, meaning that they had certain entitlements including the right to paid holiday and the right to receive the National Minimum Wage. Uber have now appealed this decision which could have far reaching consequences for them.


With Christmas just gone, it is important for businesses to consider their employment relationships with temporary staff in particular. Contracts and policies should be reviewed now to ensure what is happening in practice reflects what is on paper. We can expect to see this year several reports from government bodies which are looking into the future world of work and the rapidly changing environment and how this impacts on workers.


During 2017 we also expect Brexit to be the overarching concern over much of the developing employment law. Theresa May stated at the Conservative party conference that she wishes to preserve EU-derived employment rights and provide maximum certainty to workers and businesses by converting EU-law into British Law. However, the UK may not decide to keep all laws.


For example, we expect to see this year the Court of Appeal’s decision on Sash Window Workshop Ltd and another v King which looks at the carryover of holiday where it was not taken for a reason beyond the employee’s control. This case is an example of how over the past year we have seen an ever-increasing complexity over holiday pay calculations. Post Brexit we may see a review of this area.


The Government currently hopes to trigger article 50 in May this year and we await to see how this will effect employment rights.


Another much awaited development for employment law, is the introduction of Gender Pay Gap Reporting which is expected to come into force on 6 April 2017. Private and voluntary sector employers with 250 or more employees will need to start gathering their figures in preparation for the publication of their overall gender pay gap figures which can include a narrative of why any gap exists and what steps will be taken to address this. Businesses should look at collecting data early and providing training to staff where necessary.


If as a business you require any guidance during this year of change, please do not hesitate to contact a member of our team who would be happy to assist you.

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