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The Future of HR: What you can expect from Labour’s proposed employment law reforms

In the event of a change in government after the general election on 4th July, it’s important that we are all aware of Labour’s proposed employment law changes so that we can be well prepared for and adapt to future HR requirements.

As part of their election manifesto, the Labour party have said that they will introduce an employment law bill within the first 100 days of being in power.

What are the proposed HR reforms if a Labour Government get into Power?

The changes are said to include the following:

Single worker status

Currently, the law distinguishes between three types of employment status (employee, workers and self-employed) with different rights for each status. Labour’s proposed single ‘worker’ status would include workers and employees who will be entitled to the same basic rights and protection. For example, with the new status, workers would be able to bring a claim for unfair dismissal. A separate category of self-employed will remain.

Unfair dismissal rights from day one

Under current laws, an employee must be employed for a minimum of 2 years to claim unfair dismissal.

Labour are proposing to increase employee protections and give employees those rights from day one.

No limit on compensation for unfair dismissal claims

In addition to giving employees unfair dismissal rights from day one, Labour are proposing to remove the cap on compensation for unfair dismissal.

Ending zero hours contracts

Zero hours contracts and contracts with a minimum number of hours will be banned under the new proposals. Labour promise that anyone working regular hours for 12 weeks or more will have the right to a regular contract. 

Tribunal claims time limits

Employees currently have 3 months to bring claims to an employment tribunal. Labour are proposing to increase that time limit period from 3 to 6 months.

Extension of employer liability for harassment claims to third parties

Labour’s proposed change involves extending employer liability for harassment claims to include third-party harassment. This means that employers could be held responsible if their employees are harassed not just by other employees but also by third parties such as customers, clients, or service users.

Personal liability for directors of employer companies for unpaid employment tribunal awards

Labour’s proposed change regarding personal liability for directors of employer companies involves holding directors personally accountable for unpaid employment tribunal awards if the company becomes insolvent. This would mean that directors of insolvent companies would be held personally responsible for ensuring that any employment tribunal awards are paid to the employees. If the company cannot pay due to insolvency, the directors themselves would need to cover these awards from their personal finances.

What does this mean for HR?

The changes are aimed at enhancing employee protections and increasing employer accountability. If the proposed changes come into effect, there will be significant implications for HR practices.

In terms of HR, the implications will include:

  • Policy updates
  • Training programmes
  • Strategic planning
  • Record keeping
  • Support and resource

Get HR Support from Leading HR Experts

Although we can’t predict the outcome of the election, here at Bedrock we can help you navigate and adapt to any future employment law changes, as well as support in compliance and help implement best practice.

We recognise that these changes may be challenging and stressful for you as a business owner / manager. Contact BedrockHR today to discuss your current HR Situation and how our team can help you navigate the potential new changes which may come into force under a labour government.

Labours Proposed Employment Law Reforms

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