Thursday, 1 October 2015

OCTOBER edition Employment Law Newsletter

My periodic newsletter on all things employment law related that I think you should be aware of.
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Hello  Readers ,

   Well this Autumn has certainly brought us something to think about,   Will Carol Kirkwood improve?    Will Anton du Beke actually get to Blackpool,?    and other weighty matters!  
For the rest of us simply trying to run our business doesn't get any easier,  it is a fact that we are one of the most over regulated countries in the world when it comes to employment legislation,    if I recall,   in 2012  there were over 200 pieces of employment legislation to learn/absorb as opposed to the 3 basic changes to the sentencing regulations for criminal trials.   And here we are again,    Journey times  for employees who travel to be paid for, not to mention included for calculating purposes in the working time regs if over 48 hrs.,   any overtime has to now be paid again in holiday money,  and now an overly complicated system for assessing the long term sick.
Read on for details, and, as always, call me or mail me if you have any concerns or need more information about this edition's content.

Kind regards,     Paul

First The News:
  Journeys made by mobile workers must count as working time, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) has confirmed today.  
The ruling could have significant implications for companies that employ mobile workers who spend a lot of time travelling between appointments.The decision on the case of Spanish security system installation company Tyco Integrated Security SL followed the Advocate General’s opinion on the case earlier this year.It concerns Tyco’s technicians, who use company vehicles to travel to appointments across Spain. The employer has argued that the first journey of the day (from home to the first appointment) or the last journey of the day (from the last assignment to home) do not count as “working time”.
      Instead, they regard this travel time as rest time under the Working Time Directive. The technicians brought a claim, and the Spanish courts referred the case to the ECJ to consider whether the travel time at the start and end of the day was officially working time.
for full details   read more 

My Comment:    this could have massive implications on many sectors, in fact anyone who has workers in vans company cars who must to their first job of the day,  will now be getting paid, simply for getting there,   the effect will be,   companies with this type of operation will be forced to pass on the extra cost to customers.     In effect,    it will effect   all of us,  one way or another!

As always my thanks to "Personnel Today" for the story


Holiday pay: tribunal adds wording into UK working time legislation to cover commission
On its return from the European Court of Justice (ECJ), the employment tribunal in this important case has read an extra subsection into the Working Time Regulations 1998 (SI 1998/1833) to comply with the Working Time Directive (2003/88/EC).          
Practical tips       This is a desperately disappointing decision for employers hoping for guidance on what reference period they should use when calculating holiday pay for workers on commission.
The decision, which may be appealed, does confirm that the ECJ ruling in Lock can be implemented in the UK without the need for legislative change. Employers should already be looking at their commission schemes to ensure that they comply with the ECJ ruling.
Technically, the principles in this case apply only to workers' holiday pay for the four weeks' annual leave to which they are entitled under EU law. Employers need to consider whether or not it is worth the extra administrative burden to treat the additional 1.6 weeks to which UK workers are entitled under reg.13A of the Working Time Regulations 1998 differently.
Employers can take comfort from the introduction of the Deduction from Wages (Limitation) Regulations 2014, which limit the extent to which backdated claims for deductions from wages can be brought in the employment tribunal in relation to holiday pay claims made on or after 1 July 2015.     full details     read more  

 My Comment:    disappointing indeed,   it basically means costs will be going up,   for all of us in the end,  and firms/services whatever,  faced with this additional burden,   will have to put the prices up.   When the present Mrs Murray and I  were first married,  if we wanted a holiday,  we saved up for it!  

Credit must go to Personel Today for this story,

And finally tonight!

Fit for Work opens for employers 

Employers in England and Wales are able, from today, to refer employees to Fit for Work, the government service set up to help working people on long-term sickness absence.
Fit for Work provides occupational health services to people who have been, or are likely to be, off work for four weeks or more. It is particularly aimed at small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) that have little or no occupational health support.
  Each year, around 870,000 absences in England and Wales last for four weeks or more, according to statistics from the Department for Work and Pensions.
A YouGov poll in 2013 found that 31% of workers were employed by organisations that offered no occupational health support.
Welfare reform minister Lord Freud said: “The longer someone remains out of work due to sickness, the greater the cost to their career, income and future earnings.
“Fit for Work will ensure that people get the right help when they need it to get back to work so they can continue to support themselves and their families.”
 My Comment :  I've tried to access this once already for a client,  they certainly don't make it easy! Talk about red tape,   after three days we gave up,  and went back to the tried and tested method of sending the employee to OH,   and paying for a report. 


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Health& Safety Myths

A light hearted look at some of the idiotic things we hear.

Case 376 - Customer asked to leave DIY store after refusal to remove toddler from store trolley


Customer asked to leave DIY store after refusal to remove toddler from coin operated store trolley with no child seat.

Panel opinion

The panel believe that the DIY store has taken a responsible approach to the issue and provides sensible advice and support to their customers. The company’s products are typically heavy construction materials and the risk to children riding in trolleys in this environment is a real one. The store is working with others to find trolleys which are designed to carry children as well as their merchandise but in the meantime their offer of assistance to parents with children is a sensible and considerate alternative.

An apology to my readers:

I'm sorry chums,   despite my best efforts I just couldn't find anything actually funny to report!    


As always my thanks to the HSE site for these stories.    see them at:


 The information contained in these pages is an HR overview and not intended to be comprehensive legal advice, always seek specific qualified advice before taking any action that could lead to litigation.   Equally, were we have provided links to external web pages, we are not responsible for the content of other sites.

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