It's been a busy year already for employment and HR law - we've put the key updates in one place so all you need to do is read on:
Employment Rates - Annual Increases
To start, employment rates and thresholds had their annual increases in April. These include:
- 1 April 2019: National Minimum/Living Wage. National Living Wage (for ages 25+) increased to £8.21 per hour (from £7.83).
- 6 April 2019: Statutory Sick Pay increased to £94.25 per week (from £92.05).
- 7 April 2019: Maternity, Paternity, Adoption and Shared Parental Pay increased to £148.68 per week (from £145.18).
The government has a full breakdown of rates and thresholds for employers
Five in Five
- The Information Commissioner's Office ("ICO") issued 103 monetary penalties (from £400 - £4,000) in 2018 for organisations who didn't pay the data protection fee (ICO Website).
- Confirmed: an employee has a right to a Section 1 Statement of Employment Particulars (due within two months for anyone employed for at least one month) even when employed for less than two months (Stefanko & Others v Maritime Hotel Ltd) - also, from April 2020 this must be provided by the first day of employment.
- ICO has fined Bounty UK £400k for sharing the personal data of +14m individuals without informing them they might do so (breaching the Data Protection Act 1998).
- An employee's belief in Scottish independence can be sufficient to constitute a philosophical belief and a protected characteristic under the Equality Act 2010 (the case, McEleny v MoD, will now consider whether discrimination actually occurred).
- The government consultation on non-disclosure agreements closes on 29 April - plus a number of UK universities are the latest employers accused of using gagging orders regarding bullying, discrimination and sexual misconduct complaints (BBC News).