Employment law is a rapidly changing arena, therefore we have set out a list of some of the imminent changes that will affect employers and individuals in the coming months. Note: this article contains no mention of events due to take place on 29 March 2019!

1 April 2019 – National Minimum Wage/Living Wage increase

The national minimum wage/living wage will increase to £8.21 per hour for workers aged 25 and over and £7.70 per hour for those aged between 21 and 24. For workers aged between 18 and 20 it increases to £6.15 per hour and £4.35 per hour for 16-17 year olds.

4 April 2019 – Gender pay gap reports (private and voluntary sectors)

Private and voluntary sector employers in England, Wales and Scotland, with at least 250 employees, are required to publish the second report which includes information about the differences in pay and bonuses between men and women in their workforce.

Northern Ireland has the same requirements, however, their legislation includes a fine of up to £5,000 for non-compliance and a requirement to report on ethnicity and disability pay gaps.

6 April 2019 – Increased maximum penalty for ‘aggravated breaches’

As it stands, an employment tribunal can award a penalty of up to £5,000 against an employer where it is found to have breached an employee’s rights and the breach has one or more aggravating features e.g. the breach is deliberate or the employer repeatedly breaches their employment law obligations. On 6 April 2019, this penalty will rise fourfold to a maximum limit of £20,000.

6 April 2019 – Pay slip changes

Employers must include the total number of hours worked where an individual’s pay varies according to the hours worked. In addition, payslips must be given to workers, not just employees.

6 April 2019 – Statutory Sick Pay (SSP)

The rate for SSP increases from £92.05 to £94.25.

6 April 2019 – Family friendly rates

The rates for Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP), Statutory Paternity Pay (SPP), Shared Parental Pay (ShPP) and Statutory Adoption Pay (SAP) is to increase from £145.18 to £148.68.