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March 2023 Newsletter

Calendar March 16, 2023

Case of the Month: Harpur Trust v. Brazel – increased holiday pay for part-year employees?

The government has released a consultation paper in response to the Supreme Court’s ruling in Harpur Trust v. Brazel to address issues raised by the ruling, most notably the possibility that part-year employees may be entitled to an increased holiday entitlement. This is worrying employers as their method of calculating holiday pay will need to change.

The consultation document strives to ensure that holiday compensation is proportionate to the time worked while acknowledging the difficulty and problems faced by businesses when calculating holiday pay for irregular working patterns. The deadline for comments is March 9, 2023.

Are you worried about how this change will impact your business? Contact us today for expert employment law support.


The impact of the cost-of-living crisis on your business he cost-of-living crisis is already having a significant impact on both employees and employers, and it’s projected to continue well into 2023.

The Bureau of National Statistics estimates that while earnings increased by 6.4% between September 2022 and November 2022, average pay actually decreased as a result of inflation. Employers will probably continue to receive demands for wage increases from workers who are having trouble meeting their own financial obligations, but they will also need to weigh this against rising overhead costs.


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The government stated in 2022 that the National Minimum Wage, National Living Wage, and other statutory payments would be increased in response to the cost-of-living problem. These changes are scheduled to take effect on April 1, 2023. It is important that employers review the pay scale for staff to ensure they are paid in line with these new changes.


Requesting Predictable Work Patterns

The government has supported a Bill granting all employees and workers (including agency and zero hours workers) the opportunity to formally request a more consistent work schedule. The change aims to address unfair flexibility that favours companies over employees.


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The new right will be available, subject to parliamentary confirmation, to people who (1) have been employed by the company for 26 weeks (not necessarily continuously), (2) are subject to unpredictable work schedules, and (3) have fixed-term agreements that last less than a year.
There will be a limit of two requests per employee each year. Companies will have the right to reject requests for a stated reason, such as the associated costs or a lack of work available during the requested hours.


Change to the law on allocating tips?

The proposed modifications to the law, which currently permits companies to deduct a percentage of employees’ tips, has the potential to affect and benefit more than one million workers.


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The Employment (Allocation of Tips) Bill seeks to make it illegal for employers to withhold any portion of consumer gratuities from their staff members. It is suggested that tips be given out fairly and openly so that workers are paid what they have earned. This will probably be complemented by a Code of Practice, which will provide further direction on which employees benefit from the recommendations in certain circumstances.

It is yet unclear how these duties will be enforced. Employers would reportedly need to keep track of tips and demonstrate how they were distributed. Workers will have the right to ask to inspect records, and records must be retained for a minimum amount of time. On March 3 2023, the measure will go through the second reading stage in the House of Lords after passing the House of Commons and completing the first reading stage. It will then move on to the committee stage after the second reading. This change is sure to impact a number of businesses in the hospitality industry and elsewhere.


Sexual Harassment at Work: New Proposals for Change

A new bill is being considered that would mandate companies to take “all reasonable steps” to stop sexual harassment at work. This bill also considers special protection for volunteers and interns, and also the steps required to prevent harassment from third-parties.


It is also debating whether to increase the current three months deadline for filing a claim under the Equality Act 2010 to six months.


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