20 mars 2019

Hot Topics

April 2019 increases in statutory pay rates and compensation awards

From 1 April 2019

  • The national living wage (for those aged 25 and over) will be £8.21 per hour.
  • The national minimum wage will be:
    • £7.70 ph for those aged 21-24
    • £6.15 ph for those aged 18-20
    • £4.35 ph for those aged under 18
    • £3.90 ph for apprentices either aged under 19, or in the first year of their apprenticeship.

From 6 April 2019

  • The maximum compensatory award for unfair dismissal will be the smaller of £86,444 (was £83,682) or 52 weeks' salary.
  • The cap on a week's pay for unfair dismissal basic awards and statutory redundancy payments will be £525 (was £508).
  • Statutory sick pay will increase from £94.25 per week (was £92.05).

From 7 April 2019

  • Statutory maternity pay, paternity pay, shared parental pay and adoption pay will be increased from £145.18 per week to £148.68.

All workers have right to an itemised payslip from 6 April

From 6 April 2019, all workers will have the right to an itemised pay statement, and the ability to enforce that right at an employment tribunal. Where a worker is paid on an hourly rate basis, the itemised payslip must show the number of hours paid for, with different figures provided where an employee is paid a different rate of pay for different types of work. The government has also produced guidance on this requirement.

This reflects the government's commitment to employers providing itemised payslips to all workers (not just employees), as stated in its response to the Taylor Review of Modern Working Practices. The right does not apply to wages or salary paid during a period of work that took place before the 6 April.

Government has launched its first holiday pay advertising campaign

Due to confusion around holiday pay, the government is aware that shift workers, people on zero-hour contracts and agency workers are missing out on holiday pay to which they are entitled. It has therefore launched its first holiday pay advertising campaign to raise awareness of rights, as part of the modern Industrial Strategy.

The advertising campaign "aims to reach workers and employers through video on-demand, Spotify advertising, and digital website and social media advertising, as well as adverts in train stations and on the roadside."

The government has also published updated guidance providing advice to employers and workers regarding how to calculate holiday pay. Along with the advertising campaign, this appears to be a direct response to the views expressed by Matthew Taylor in his Modern Working Practice review, which stated that the government needs to do more to promote awareness of holiday pay entitlements.

Government issues guidance on understanding a gender pay gap

Last month, the Government Equalities Office released "Eight ways to understand your gender pay gap" and " Four steps to developing a gender pay gap action plan" to help employers understand and take action to close their gender pay gaps.

The first guidance note deals with practical questions employers may have, and suggests approaches they can adopt to address gender pay gaps at different levels or grades across their organisations.

Issues covered in the note include considering gender balance in promotions, rates at which men and women leave an organisation, and whether particular aspects of pay (such as starting salaries and bonuses) differ by gender.

The second note outlines how to develop a gender pay gap action plan by analysing data and identifying actions, consulting and engaging with the workforce, revising, assessing and embedding the action plan, and allowing enough time for it to take effect.

Reasonable adjustments disability passports

The TUC and the GMB have produced a model reasonable adjustments employer agreement (for representatives to agree with their employer) and a template reasonable adjustments passport (to capture what adjustments have been put in place to eliminate barriers in the workplace).

The passporting system means that when a disabled member moves role or their line manager changes, they don't have to re-explain or renegotiate their existing reasonable adjustments. Section 1 of the document explains the benefits of a reasonable adjustments disability passport, how they work and how a union could negotiate their use in the workplace. Sections 2 and 3 contain a model reasonable adjustment disability policy and a model passport.

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