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Employment law changes in the budget

BY Steve Briggs
Employment Law & HR
BG Purple

The government’s recent Budget has made a number of significant changes that will impact on employers.

In keeping with its stated intention to cut red tape for businesses, the government announced that a number of provisions due to be implemented in April will not go ahead as previously indicated.

Chief among the measures to be repealed is the removal of the extension of flexible working.  The proposed regulations would have extended the right to request flexible working to the parents of children under the age of 18.  This extension will no longer take effect.  The right to request flexible working will remain only in respect of the parents of children under 17 (18 in the case of the parents of a disabled child). 

The government has indicated that it remains committed to giving all employees the right to request flexible working but no timescale has been announced for this.

Also repealed are some of the measures due to be introduced in the Equality Act, in particular the provisions on dual HR which allowed employees to bring the same claim under more than one heading.  In a major U-turn the government has also announced that it will remove the requirement on employers to take reasonable steps to prevent third party harassment.

Finally, the Government has confirmed its previous announcement that it will not be extending the right to request time off to train for companies of fewer than 250 staff.

We will keep LAWmail readers up to date with the details as they become available.

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