For our analysis of the likely impact of Brexit on employment law, please refer to the blog in April.
Immigration Bill receives Royal Assent
The Immigration Bill received Royal Assent on 12 May 2016 and is now the Immigration Act 2016.
The Act introduces checks on illegal working and provisions to prevent the exploitation of migrant workers, such as:
Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Businesses (Amendment) Regulations 2016
The Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Businesses (Amendment) Regulations 2016 (SI 2016/510) came into effect on 8 May 2016.
Key amendments to the Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Business Regulations 2003 are:
Increase of limits on tribunal compensatory awards
Increased compensation limits will apply to cases where the effective date of termination is on or after 6 April 2016. In particular, the maximum compensatory award for unfair dismissal has increased to £78,962, and the maximum limit on a week’s pay £for the purposes of calculating the basic award has increased to £479. Note that the increase in the limit on a week’s pay also applies to the calculation of statutory redundancy payments.
The March 2016 Budget
George Osbourne presented his latest budget last Wednesday and whilst most of the media coverage focussed on proposals to cut welfare benefits, the budget contained a number of changes and proposals relating to employment law.
• Draft legislation has already been published for the introduction in April 2017 of an apprenticeship levy whereby a contribution equating to 0.5% of total payroll will be collected from larger employers to fund a system of digital vouchers available to all employers to pay for the cost of apprenticeships (see below for more detail). It was announced last Wednesday that employers who have to pay the apprenticeship levy will receive a top up payment from the Government equating to 10% of their monthly levy contribution which they can use to fund apprenticeships.
Latest on the Trade Union Bill
As the Trade Union Bill makes its way through the House of Lords, the Government has published its response to the consultation about more stringent ballot thresholds for workers in "important public services".
Under the new Bill, a union will only be able to call a strike where at least 50% of those members eligible to vote participate in the ballot and a majority of those participants vote in favour of strike action. However in "important public services", in addition to the requirement of a 50% plus turnout, at least 40% of eligible members must vote in favour of strike action.