We feel that the following areas could be scrutinised:
- Agency Worker Regulations
These Regulations require employers to offer equal terms and benefits to agency workers once they have been working for 12 weeks. They are very unpopular with businesses and are therefore likely to be top of the Government’s “hit” list.
- Working Time Regulations
The British statutory holiday entitlement of 5.6 weeks per year is likely to remain, particularly as it is longer than the amount stipulated by the EU.
However, we consider that holiday entitlement which continues to accrue for workers on long-term sick and also overtime and commission being included for the purposes of holiday pay are unpopular and are therefore at risk of repeal.
The Government may also try to scrap the 48 hour working week as it is either ignored or employees simply opt-out.
- Redundancy rights where more than 20 employees are affected
The period for consultation where 100+ workers are affected was reduced recently from 90 days to 45 days. The rights are, however, still unpopular with businesses, particularly in light of recent case law. As such, these rights may be reduced further by the Government. However, we expect there to be strong Union opposition to this.
The TUPE Regulations have been enshrined in British law since 1981 and the British TUPE Regulations go above and beyond the EU’s requirements. In particular, Britain added service provision changeovers to protect staff where there is a change of contractors. That said, there are likely to be some changes here, in particular in relation to consultation requirements and harmonising terms and conditions of employment following a transfer.
- Anti-discrimination legislation
British law protected workers against sex, race and disability discrimination long before it was required to do so by the EU. The EU did add additional protected characteristics such as religion and belief. We are, however, unlikely to see a significant change here. Although, we may see compensation for discrimination claims being capped.