Employment Law Update

Welcome to our latest newsletter, designed to keep you updated on the latest developments in employment law, and to inform you of what is on the horizon.

The value of employment rights may go up as well as down

The Chancellor has announced that from April next year, employers may offer employees shares in lieu of certain rights. While open to all employers, the move is designed to encourage small and medium sized, fast growing, businesses, to take on new staff without fear of red tape.

Here are our initial thoughts on the proposals. The move comes as part of the government's red tape challenge, and is likely to be incorporated into the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill, which we wrote about here.

Women in the workplace: aspiration or legislation?

As the EU is shortly due to debate the proposal to introduce quotas for women on boards, the discussion on gender equality is very much in the limelight.  This includes an inquiry recently launched by BIS into women in the workplace. Here, we examine the reasons behind the inquiry, and the possible responses of a government keen to cut red tape.

Back from the Brink

A recent case from the Employment Appeal Tribunal has given employers a useful escape route when faced with an employee with a genuine grievance. Here is our summary of the case, and some suggestions for how to cope in an emergency.

When Less is Not More

If you are considering dismissing an employee, you need to be clear about the reasons for doing so. It's usually a bad idea to throw everything at the employee in the hope that something will stick, but sometimes it can be dangerous to be too selective. Here is an example of when the employer shouldn't have concentrated its efforts too narrowly.

Outsourced and outside TUPE

A couple of recent cases have shown that TUPE will not apply to an outsourced provider on the sale of the business which it supplies. This will be hugely helpful for some businesses, particularly for commercial landlords, but may cause some headaches for the providers. As one of the cases is heard in the Court of Appeal this month, we consider the implications of the decisions here.

Sick of holidays?

When two rights overlap, the result is often confusing and unexpected. One area of overlap in employment law is holidays and sickness absence. The Court of Appeal has given some guidance in this area which employers may not find welcome.

Marital law

Discriminating against someone because they are married is unlawful. But is it unlawful to discriminate against someone because they are married to a particular person? Earlier this year, we were involved in a case which, to some extent, answered this question. A summary of the case can be found here.

For more information, or to discuss how any of these issues could affect your business, please contact:

Joanna Blackburn
Partner, Head of Employment
Tel: +44 207 440 7162