With the 2023 winter work party season upon us, company, location, or team level seasonal gatherings provide a chance for employers to thank staff for their hard work and for everyone to relax, socialise and have some fun with their colleagues. Yet without careful thought and planning, they can be problematic for employers who can find themselves faced with fallout from the festivities.Continue Reading Get the party started: avoiding HR issues at festive events

In May 2023 we reported how the UK government made a series of announcements in respect of proposed reforms to two areas of law derived from the EU – the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 (TUPE) and the Working Time Regulations 1998 (WTR) – and launched consultations on its proposals. The government has now published a response to those consultations and the reforms it intends will go ahead, and which ones will not. 

This blog explores the changes which will take effect, and which are expected to be in force from 1 January 2024.Continue Reading An update – Changes to post-Brexit UK employment law: What is next for working time and TUPE

How has the Bill changed?

The House of Commons have approved the Worker Protection (Amendment of Equality Act 2010) Bill (the Bill), albeit in a form that is significantly less onerous than had been originally proposed.

As originally proposed, the Bill would have:

  1. imposed liabilities on employers for failure to take “all reasonable steps” to protect their staff from third party harassment (essentially seeking to re-create protections that previously existed under the Equality Act 2010, which were removed by the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2003); and
  2. created a new legal duty for employers to take “all reasonable steps” to prevent sexual harassment of staff during the course of employment. This duty was stated to be enforceable by the Equalities and Human Rights Commission.

In the version of the Bill that was approved, item one above was removed in its entirety. Item two was recast to require the employer to take “reasonable steps”, rather than “all reasonable steps” to prevent the sexual harassment of their staff.

The net result is that rather than establishing a duty for employers to protect their employees against third party harassment on the basis of any protected characteristic, the Bill now only establishes a duty in relation to “sexual harassment”, as defined under the Equality Act 2010.Continue Reading Sexual harassment in the workplace: Update on the Worker Protection (amendment of Equality Act 2010) Bill in the United Kingdom

Employers will be liable for the discriminatory acts of their employees in the course of employment unless they have taken ‘all reasonable steps’ to prevent the wrongdoing.

Whether all reasonable steps have been taken will be fact-specific and the hurdle is a high one; the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) stated in its Statutory

Changes to the UK’s statutory regime for flexible working have been in discussion for several years, but reforms are now coming to fruition.

Improving flexibility for the modern working environment has been on the agenda for many years, and the flexible working movement gained further momentum following COVID-19 lockdowns, with developments in technology making remote

The Labour party is considering a proposal to introduce a “right to disconnect” (a so-called right to switch off) if it wins the next general election. It follows an increasing trend since 2017, especially across Europe, of introducing restrictions on employers contacting workers outside normal working hours or protecting employees who choose not to engage

The tide is turning on employment law at sea. For decades, maritime employment seemed to be governed more by treaty than by specific national regulation. Increasingly, however, the UK has begun to take action – best demonstrated by the new “Seafarers’ Wages Act”, passed in response to recent well-documented controversies.

In this post, we examine

On 10 May the UK government made a series of announcements that affect employment law.

Firstly, a significant change to the Retained EU Law (Revocation and Reform) Bill means that we are no longer on tenterhooks about what EU laws will continue to apply. The sunset clause, which provided that EU law would be automatically