In Focus: Umbrella.co.uk Takes A Look At Some Employment Law Revisions

29 October 2014

As October kicks in, so do certain revisions inherent to the UK’s Employment Law system. We looked last month at the changes to the National Minimum Wage, so this time around Umbrella.co.uk Director Miles Grady takes us on a quick overview of other changes to be rolled out across the system.

“Two areas of key interest, over and above the headline-grabbing minimum wage discussion, revolved around time off for fathers and soon-to-be fathers accompanying pregnant partners to antenatal appointments; and fair pay audits that can be forced onto employers where the pay balance has been infringed.”

“As regards the first issue, that of antenatal time away for male partners, this extends to agency workers, so is of interest to contractors who often face that acute battle to balance home and work lives. The right specifically refers to unpaid time taken away to attend two antenatal appointments, with six and half hours per appointment.”

“Agency workers need to have completed 12 weeks working as a qualifying period to eligible for this time away. They also cannot have changed their role with their employer or take breaks in between roles. Additionally, pregnant agency workers are protected by the revised Employment Act against the provision of time off by their employer for them to attend antenatal appointments.”

“The second issue looks at fair pay auditing. The Government has brought in the Equality Acts 2010 Equal Pay Audits Regulations from this October. These regs oblige tribunals to force fair pay audits on to employers in breach of fair pay rulings. Although certain new businesses are exempt, it should also be noted that the legislation is not backdated, and only operates from 1st October 2014.”

“The legislation will look to publicise pay information to disclose gender gaps or unequal pay level distributions in organisations consider to be in conflict with the new set of regulations. Employers in breach face hefty fines, and even more costly PR damage.” 

Umbrella.co.uk is a trading name of Umbrella-Company Ltd. Umbrella-Company Ltd are a APSCo Affiliate, Professional Passport approved and are silver business partners with the Institute of Recruiters (IOR).