As any HR professional will know, April is always a time of change and making sure that their company complies with all the new amended laws and deadlines. To make sure that you are ready and up to date we have put together an extensive guide of all the changes, updates and deadlines that you need to be aware of.

If you like this blog and would like more HR information or support then please don’t hesitate to contact us by emailing: help@whitcombehr.co.uk.

There are 8 amended laws and deadlines that you need to be aware of:

1. INCREASE STATUTORY FAMILY RELATED PAY & SICK PAY
The weekly rate of statutory maternity, paternity, adoption and shared parental pay increases to £151.20 from 5 April 2020 and the weekly rate of statutory sick pay increases to £95.85 from 6 April 2020.

It is up to HR to make sure that staff on maternity, paternity, adoption, shared parental leave and sick leave are paid these statutory minimum rates.
We would also advise that you review your policies and documents that mention the rates, such as your maternity policies and sickness absence procedures.

NOTE: In the wake of coronavirus (Covid-19), the Government has announced that it will introduce measures requiring employers to pay statutory sick pay from the first day of an employee’s sickness, rather than after three waiting days. HR professionals should monitor the situation to ensure employees are paid at the appropriate time.

2. ENSURE WORKERS ARE PAID NATIONAL MINUMUM WAGE
The national living wage for workers aged 25 and over increases to £8.72 per hour on 1 April 2020. Other national minimum wage rates also increase on 1 April 2020, with hourly rates rising to £8.20 for workers aged 21 to 24, to £6.45 for workers aged 18 to 20 and to £4.55 for workers aged 16 or 17.

TIP: Don’t forget you must keep adequate records of all payments so that you can show that your organisation has complied with the national minimum wage rules.

3. COMPLY WITH CHANGES TO WRITTEN STATEMENTS
We have talked about this point in detail over the past month & today is the day that the changes finally take place. From 6 April 2020, the requirement to provide a written statement of terms and conditions extends to workers, not just employees. This includes casual and zero hours workers. The right to a statement no longer requires a minimum length of service and applies from the worker’s first day working for the organisation.

RESOURCES: For a full list of all of the changes you need to make to comply with the above point please take a look at our last blog HERE.

4. IMPLEMENT NEW RIGHTS TO PARENTAL BEREAVEMENT LEAVE & PAY
Bereaved parents of a child who dies on or after 6 April 2020 have a new right to take up to two weeks’ parental bereavement leave with pay at a statutory minimum rate. The right, sometimes referred to as “Jack’s Law”, also applies to stillbirths occurring after 24 weeks of pregnancy.

NOTE: Make sure that all line managers are fully trained and prepared on how to guide and manage parental bereavement leave.

5. THIRD GENDER PAY GAP REPORTING DEADLINE
If you have a business of 250 employees or more then you have probably already been in the process of finalising your gender pay gap reports, however the government announced last month that it was suspending the third pay gap report due to the coronavirus outbreak.

As most businesses will have this data ready by now it is being advised that everyone publishes their reports when the outbreak has passed. When this time comes the report must appear on your website in a publicly accessible manners and must remain there for 3 years. It must also be uploaded the governments reporting website.

NOTE: Despite the lack of enforcement, failure to report by the required deadline (when the suspension on gender pay gap reporting is lifted) may still adversely affect your organisation’s reputation not only in relation to current and future employees, but also customers and competitors.

6. ADJUST HOLIDAY PAY CALCULATIONS
Also discussed on our previous blog all HR professionals will need to adjust how they calculate holiday pay from the reference period of 12 week to 52 weeks.

Your organisation’s holiday policy may require adjusting if it refers to the holiday pay reference period and you should also check the contracts of employment of workers with irregular working hours to ensure that, where the reference period is mentioned, it is updated with the new period.

7. ENSURE QUALIFYING AGENCY WORKERS RECEIVE EQUAL PAY
On 6 April 2020, the ability for employers to pay agency workers less than their own workers in certain circumstances, also known as the “Swedish derogation”, is abolished. Under the derogation, agency workers can exchange their right to be paid the same as directly recruited employees for a contract guaranteeing pay between assignments.

8. UPDATE STATUTORY REDUNDANCY PAY CALCULATIONS
Employers that dismiss employees for redundancy must pay those with two years’ service an amount based on the employee’s weekly pay, length of service and age. The weekly pay is subject to a maximum amount. This amount is £538 from 6 April 2020.

We know that these are unprecedented times, so please do let us know if you would like any more information on the above topics or on any of our blogs by emailing us at help@whitcombehr.co.uk