The Business Secretary, Vince Cable, and the Chancellor, George Osborne, have today confirmed that the qualifying period for bringing an unfair dismissal claim will increase from one to two years.  The change will take effect from 6 April 2012.

The announcement is interesting, as only last week the Government was quick to deny that any final decision had been made on this issue.  The denial came after it had been pointed out that an official BIS report said that the qualifying period was set to increase – even though the Government has yet to formally respond on its proposals.  It seems however that it was more a case of timing rather than policy – dare we suggest it simply wanted to wait until the Conservative Party Conference to issue this "latest development in the Government’s workplace reforms which aim to increase business confidence to take on more workers"?   In the meantime we are still waiting for the Government’s formal response to its consultation on Tribunal Reform.  

As part of its Red Tape Challenge, the initiative to reduce the legislative burden on employers, the Government has also today launched its review of employment-related laws.  This is your opportunity to tell the Government how you think it could "improve this important set of regulations and make them more workable for all".  Leave your comments on its website.  The results will be published later this year.