|Stress Claim and How Good Notes Save the Day|
The High Court case of Easton v B&Q plc has been rightly seen as being about the difficult hurdles employees must overcome if they are to prove that their employer should have foreseen their injury and is therefore liable for psychiatric illness caused by occupational stress. This high hurdle was established in the 2002 case of Hatton v Sutherland.
Published Apr 22, 2016 - 03:01 PM
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|Promoting Religious Beliefs at Work|
In Wasteney v East London NHS Trust, the EAT has upheld a tribunal's decision that disciplinary action taken against a Christian senior manager for ‘imposing’ her religious views on a Muslim junior employee was not discriminatory. This was after being suspended for 9 months.
Published Apr 22, 2016 - 02:57 PM
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|A ‘well-being vacuum’ in the Workplace|
Despite increased business awareness of the importance of actively supporting health and well-being in the workplace, there remains a stubborn 'implementation gap' in UK workplaces, which is threatening individuals' health and long-term business sustainability.
Published Apr 18, 2016 - 02:17 PM
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|The Living Wage|
In the Budget last summer, it was announced that a "Living Wage" will replace the current levels of National Minimum Wage (NMW).
The Government is to introduce a ‘National Living Wage’ premium, on top of the NMW for workers aged 25 and over from 1st April 2016. This means that the minimum wage for workers aged 25 and over will have gone up twice in the last 12 months. On 1st October 2015, the standard adult rate of the NMW increased to £6.70 ﴾from £6.50﴿ and then in April 2016 it will go up again, for those aged 25+, to £7.20. Notably, the National Living Wage will not apply to adult workers aged under 25, and this group will continue to be entitled only to the National Minimum Wage, which is currently £6.70, and will be reviewed again in October 2016.
Published Apr 18, 2016 - 02:14 PM
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|Spring Budget and Other Changes|
Chancellor George Osborne has announced that from April 2018 termination payments over £30,000 will be subject to employer's national insurance contributions, as well as Income Tax which is already payable. Under £30,000 will still be free of tax. He said in his speech that “the rules are complex and the exemptions incentivise employers to manipulate the rules, structuring arrangements to include payments that are ordinarily taxable such as notice and bonuses to minimise the tax and NICs due”.
Published Mar 21, 2016 - 04:48 PM
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|Employer ‘Vicariously Liable’ for Employee’s Action|
Recent cases in the Supreme Court have reviewed and changed the common law doctrine of vicarious liability. This holds that a party can be liable for the actions or omissions of someone else. The practical implications of this legal principle are most commonly seen in the workplace, where an employer can be held legally responsible for their employee’s behaviour, if it can be shown that this behaviour occurred in the course of their employment. One of the cases extended the outreach of this legal principle by ruling that vicarious liability can exist even when there is no contract of employment. The verdicts have important implications for a wide range of employers, particularly those whose business involves contact with the public.
Published Mar 21, 2016 - 11:40 AM
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|Master Trust Schemes|
The BBC has recently reported that thousands of workers who have been encouraged by the Government to take out pension plans could be at risk of losing their savings. There are fears that many companies providing auto enrolment pensions are too small to survive. Independent experts claim the problem could affect up to a quarter of a million people a year who are putting their savings into so-called master trust pensions.
Published Mar 16, 2016 - 10:31 AM
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|The Living Wage|
The Government is to introduce a ‘National Living Wage’ premium, on top of the National Minimum Wage for workers aged 25 and over from 1st April 2016. Notably, the National Living Wage will not apply to adult workers aged under 25, and this group will continue to be entitled only to the NMW, which is currently £6.70.
Published Feb 23, 2016 - 03:13 PM
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|Dyslexia at Work|
Starbucks has recently lost a very high profile disability discrimination tribunal case, after it wrongly accused a dyslexic employee of falsifying documents when she had simply misread numbers she was responsible for recording. An employment tribunal found that Starbucks had unlawfully discriminated against Meseret Kumulchew, after she inaccurately recorded the water and fridge temperatures as part of her duties as a supervisor
Published Feb 23, 2016 - 02:51 PM
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|Levers for Workplace Productivity|
The issue of the UK's productivity has recently hit the headlines with the release of a report by the Chancellor Fixing Foundations: Creating a more prosperous nation. The plan focused on two key areas: encouraging long-term investment and promoting a 'dynamic economy'. Some of the key points were higher pay, lower welfare society and a highly skilled workforce. It coincided with the Governor of the Bank of England initiating a debate about the alleged failure of the British economy to become more productive.
Published Feb 16, 2016 - 06:05 PM
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