The Practical Lawyer


Termination payments – NI

From 6 April 2019, employers will have to pay NI on any part of a termination payment that exceeds £30,000. Note that this is employer NI (it is not payable on employee NI).

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Zero-hours – holiday pay

Zero-hour contract ‘workers’ do have employment rights. These include the national minimum wage, holiday pay and statutory rest breaks.

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Right to be accompanied – postponement

The right to be accompanied to a disciplinary hearing is set out in ERA 1999. In essence, a ‘worker’ has the right to choose any companion to attend a disciplinary hearing, as long as they are from within three categories of individuals:

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Agency workers – ‘temporary’?

The effect of the Agency Workers Regs 2010 was seriously undermined by the EAT decision in Moran [2013].

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To what extent has GDPR changed the rules on subject access requests (SARs)?

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Employer – distasteful conduct

An ET found that a manager’s conduct was ‘clearly distasteful’ when they binned a job applicant’s CV because she was ‘plain-looking’ and not slim enough.

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Fair dismissal – no warning?

The general ‘rule of thumb’ is that dismissal without prior warning will be unfair (unless there has been ‘gross misconduct’).

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Gig economy – implications

We looked at the Pimlico Plumbers case in the September 2018 issue (p8). In general terms, that was seen as a victory for workers in the gig economy, with the Supreme Court looking at the reality of the relationship (rather than the legal labels attached).

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Shared parental leave – take-up

Shared parental leave (SPL) was introduced in 2015. It allows parents to share up to 50 weeks of leave, with up to 37 weeks paid (subject to eligibility criteria), and they can choose to take the leave in blocks in order to provide greater flexibility.

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HMRC – minimum wage

HMRC has significantly expanded its enforcement of the minimum wage. It is taking a far more proactive approach, which basically sees this as a way of raising revenue. In practice, HMRC will exhaustively examine employers’ working practices to check for technical breaches.

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