What is in force or expected to come into force this year? 1 January Whistleblowing “Prescribed persons” are required to produce annual reports of whistleblowing disclosures (without identifying the worker who made the disclosure, their employer or other person about whom the disclosure was made). 11 January Zero hours contracts Regulations came into force which provides the right to unfair dismissal protection for employees working under a zero hours contract, who are dismissed because the employee has failed to comply with an exclusivity clause. 1 April National Living Wage National Living Wage for workers aged 25 and over will be introduced at the rate of £7.20 per hour. 1 April Penalties for failing to pay the National Minimum Wage or National Living Wage Penalties for failing to pay the appropriate rates doubled from 100% of the shortfall in wages to 200% of the shortfall, capped at £20,000 per worker. 6 April Increase to ET limits Increase in the maximum compensatory award for unfair dismissal to £78,962 (from £78,335). Increase in the maximum amount of a week’s pay used to calculate statutory redundancy payments and various awards including the basic award for unfair dismissal claims to £479 (from £475). 6 April Statutory payments for SMP There will be no increase in the weekly rates. These will remain as follows: SMP, SAP; PP and ShPP - £139.58 per week Sick pay - £88.45 per week. 23 June EU Referendum Referendum on whether UK should remain in the EU. Expected October 2016 Gender Pay Reporting Employers with over 250 employees will have to publish details of their gender pay gap. This will not apply to public sector employers yet. Date TBC Repayment of public sector exit payments Qualifying individuals will be obliged to notify their new and previous employer where they propose to return to any part of the public sector (as an employee, self employed contractor or office holder) after they have received a public sector exit payment within the previous 12 months. Public sector exit payments include those paid for loss of employment, including enhanced redundancy payments, discretionary payments to buy out actuarial reductions to pensions and severance payments. It does not apply to payments in lieu of notice, contractual bonus payments or those made in connection with incapacity, or payments awarded to the individual by a court or tribunal. Qualifying individuals are those who earned £80,000 or more within 12 months of receiving their exit payment. Repayment will be tapered, so for example, an employee returning within two months of receiving an exit payment will repay more than an employee returning nine months after receiving the payment. Date TBC Exit payments and apprenticeships The Enterprise Bill 2015-16 will introduce: A £95,000 cap on exit payments made to public sector workers to end six-figure payoffs Regulations to restrict the use of the word “apprenticeship” to Government-accredited schemes and to increase the number of public sector apprenticeships offered. Date TBC Trade unions Changes to balloting rules for industrial action including enhanced rules for “essential public services”, removing the prohibition on using agency staff to cover striking employees, measures on picketing, facility time, political donations and additional powers for the Certification Officer. Date TBC Tax treatment of termination payments Proposals include treating all payments in lieu of notice as taxable. The Government’s response to the recent consultation is expected later this year. Date TBC Company directors All company directors should be natural persons (not corporate entities). There will be a 12 month grace period after which corporate directors will cease to be directors by operation of law. For general enquiries 0370 1500 100 Or we can call you back at a time of your choice Request a call back Phone lines open 24/7, 365 days a year Contact us today For a free initial consultation Freephone 0370 1500 100 Prefer not to call? Use our form Your name* Your email* Your phone number* How can we help?* Enquiry type Court Of Protection Crime & Investigations Divorce & Family Law Solicitors Employment Law Conveyancing & Property Solicitors Medical Negligence Claims Personal Injury Claims Protecting Your Rights Wills, Trusts & Estates Solicitors This data will only be used by Irwin Mitchell for processing your query and for no other purpose.