As employers look to manage the impact of the coronavirus on their workplace, and against the backdrop of the government’s trade negotiations with the EU, employers must take care not to be caught out by a number of imminent employment law changes coming into force this April.

1 April 2020

National minimum wage raises

 

What next for employers?

While a lot of focus is naturally diverted at present to the immediate need to understand and manage the impact of the coronavirus on businesses and workplace, it is important not to overlook the above changes and ensure all is in order come April.

We anticipate further employment laws during the course of this year, promised as part of a new Employment Bill announced in last December’s Queen’s Speech. Expectations are that the Bill will include rules around the creation of a new single enforcement body for enforcing workers’ rights; the right of workers’ to a more predictable contract; a right to request flexible working for all; and other measures to support families (such as rights to leave and pay for parents of babies that require neonatal care after birth). The Bill is also expected to include provisions for safeguards around existing employment laws following the end of the Brexit transition period in December 2020. The government’s need to protect the economy in light of current events is likely to dominate the agenda, but more details may be forthcoming in the Budget on 11 March.