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The Good Work Plan – Dec 2019

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The Good Work Plan is coming into effect on 6 April 2020 and it is predicted to be the biggest shake up in employment law, with 50 changes in legislation coming into force. This follows from the “Taylor Review” in 2017 which set out a number of recommendations for the UK Government.

The Good Work Plan hopes to tackle the four main issues as follows:

  1. Employment status
  2. Increasing transparency
  3. Agency workers
  4. Enforcement

The published Good Work Plan splits the reforms into three main strands, giving details of the changes to the current law and introductions that are to come into force.

Fair and decent work

The first section covers tangible changes to the law such as the break in continuous service being extended from one week to four weeks, meaning that those employees who work on a casual basis may qualify for more employment rights which require a particular length of service. In addition to this, employees may request a more predictable and stable contract after 26 weeks of employment, which will predominately benefit individuals who are employed as a casual worker or on zero-hour contracts.

Clarity for employers and workers

The second section focuses on improving communication and certainty in the working relationship. From April 2020 the right to receive a written document setting out basic terms will be extended to workers. In addition to this, currently employers have two months to provide written terms and conditions to employees, however following the changes these must be provided on day one of employment. Another significant change under this section is the reference period used to calculate holiday pay, which will be extended from 12 weeks to 52 weeks. This is an important development especially for those who work variable hours.

Fairer enforcement

The final section focuses on promoting justice and protecting the vulnerable. State enforcement protections for agency workers will be increased and will extend to umbrella companies where they have had pay withheld or unclear deductions made. In addition to this, it is also proposed to increase the maximum level of penalty that Employment Tribunals can impose in instances of aggravated breach to £20,000.

FTA Law’s Director and Employment and HR Solicitor, Sarah Buxton, will be hosting seminars across the country in early 2020 to outline the changes in legislation and advise what you need to do to ensure you are prepared by the April deadline, and discuss the possible implications of not complying. Visit our website for more information and to secure your place.

The team at FTA Law provides advice to clients across the commercial and healthcare sectors with many of our instructions coming from referrals from long standing clients and industry contacts.

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