Archives / 2017 / July
  • Hot off the press: employment tribunal fees are illegal

    Tags: Employment Law, Employment Tribunal

    Today, it was announced that the Supreme Court has allowed the appeal by Unison against the legality of the current system of employment tribunal fees, thus, the fees regime introduced in 2013 in unlawful! 

    The reasoning for the judgment was based on the fact that since the introduction of fees, employment tribunal, claims have been reduced by 70%, therefore fees seem to be preventing access to justice. 

    The implications of this are, no doubt, going to be digested in the next few months, however there are suggestions that (a) the government will make attempts to change the fee’s regime and/or (b) employers may be required to pay fees on submission of their response. I guess we will have to watch this space!

    What has been made quite clear is that those that have paid … more

  • What information do you need from your new starters?

    Tags: Interview, Employment Law, Employment Tribunal

    We are frequently asked for advice about the recruitment process, so I thought I would share with you our top tips to help you to stay on the right side of the law when taking on new employees.

    1. Relevant Questions

    Only ask for information relevant to the position you are offering. Most employers use a standard application form asking for the usual details including previous positions and employers, education and relevant training courses, contact information and two referees.

    2. Assessments

    Where possible, during the interview stages, use assessments (i.e a typing exercise if you are recruiting a typist) to identify potential candidates. To gain the most benefit ensure that you provide clear instructions. 

    3. Unspent Convictions

    During the interview stage - you are entitled … more

  • Managing annual leave during the school holidays

    Tags: Employment Law, Holidays

    For most families, the school holidays kick off this week.  This means various things to different people; be it summer holidays, keeping the kids entertained for 6 weeks or (for me) quieter roads during rush hour.  For employers, the school holidays in particular can be a difficult time.  Many employers face a high volume of holiday requests, especially from those employees who have children of school age.

    So, how do employers successfully and fairly manage an influx of holiday requests during this time?  Here we bring you our top tips to ensure your business runs smoothly.

    1. Ensure you have clearly defined rules regarding holidays.  Many employers have a holiday policy in their staff handbook, but we’d suggest rules regarding holidays are … more

  • Should shared parental leave pay reflect enhanced maternity pay?

    Tags: Direct Sex Discrimination, Employment Law, Employment Tribunal

    Shared parental leave hasn’t had much press since its introduction in 2015. Most news-worthy stories simply commented upon the apparent lack of uptake, with new father’s not exercising their right to take such leave. One such report suggested that less than 1% of fathers had taken shared parental leave, speculating that the low uptake might be due to the fact that some employers paid enhanced maternity pay to mothers but shared parental leave pay was not comparable.

    Since its inception, we have pondered whether an employer’s shared parental leave policy which does not replicate enhanced provisions of other family-friendly policies could be discriminatory. There has always been an argument that as men can only access leave via paternity leave or shared parental leave … more


  • Parental Bereavement Bill

    Tags: Still born, Parental leave, Parental pay, House of Commons, House of Lords, Legislation, Draft

    MP Will Quince's Parental Bereavement Bill passed the final stage in the House of Commons last month, seeking to allow parents time to grieve after the death of their child and gaining unanimous cross-party support. Quince proposed the bill along with Kevin Hollinrake, after Quince’s son, Robert, was stillborn at full term in 2014, suffering from Edward’s Syndrome.  

    Current legal position  

    While it is expected of employers to be compassionate and flexible when their employees face difficult times such as mourning the loss of a loved one, there is no legal requirement for employers to provide leave or pay to employees who are grieving the loss of a child.  

    Under the Employment Rights Act, employees do have a day-one right to take a ‘ … more


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