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News & Blog

June 2011 – Employment Newsletter

Welcome to June’s edition of our employment law newsletter, keeping you up to date with changes in employment law, and informing you of recent case law developments.

Proposals for Changes to Employment Law

The Government has confirmed that collective redundancy consultation periods, the TUPE Regulations, and discrimination compensation awards will all be included in its review of employment legislation to take place this year.

Government Consultation on Flexible Working

A new consultation was launched by the Government in May to consider proposed extensions to flexible working and shared parental leave amongst other issues.  The consultation will close in August 2011.  The proposals include the following:           

Retaining 18 weeks’ maternity leave, with the remainder of the maternity leave being classed as ‘parental leave’ which could be taken by the mother or the father,

  • The extension of the right to request flexible working to all employees, not just those with children under the age of 17,
  • Amending the Working Time Regulations to provide that employees can carry over untaken holiday into subsequent years if they have lost the chance to take paid holiday because of sickness absence or maternity/parental leave.

Agency Workers Regulations 2010

Guidance has been issued by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills in relation to these Regulations which come into force in October 2011.  The Regulations provide (amongst other things) that agency workers will have the same rights to pay, benefits, rest periods and holidays as permanent workers.

CASE DEVELOPMENTS IN MAY

McKie v Swindon College

The High Court in this case held that an employer could be liable to its former employee in damages for negligent misstatement when passing on information about them to a subsequent employer, extending the scope of negligent misstatement beyond an employer providing a negligent reference.

John Lewis Partnership v Charman

A Tribunal Judge’s decision has been upheld by the EAT which enabled an out of time unfair dismissal claim to proceed.  The Tribunal held that it had been reasonable for the claimant, who did not have legal representation, to wait until the outcome of his appeal before investigating how to make a claim in the Tribunal, by which time, the three month time limit had passed.  It was just and equitable ion the circumstances to allow the claim to proceed.

Dabson v David Cover & Sons

In this case which focused on redundancy, the EAT has confirmed that in making an assessment in relation to the fairness of a redundancy, the marks awarded in the selection process should not be investigated by the Tribunal as a matter of course, and should only be investigated in exceptional circumstances, such as to avoid bias.

If you require any further clarification in relation to the above developments, or if you need any other assistance then please do not hesitate to contact our team of specialist employment solicitors on 0161 832 3304:

Shiva Shadi                      Partner

Anna Bunting                   Associate

Claire Reddington            Solicitor

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