Brexit Employment law changes
Most EU-derived employment legislation will remain applicable in the UK after 31 December 2020 for an indefinite period unless and until it is altered by the UK.
The government has expressed intentions to maintain current UK employment laws so that existing workers’ rights are unchanged, to commit to the non-regression of employment law standards and to ensure that UK workers’ rights remain aligned with the EU employment protection after 31 December 2020. However, in reality there is potential for existing employment rights to be amended or repealed. We refer to key areas below.
The government could repeal the Equality Act 2020 which protects workers from discrimination by their employers but this is unlikely as to do so would be controversial. Further, whilst changes could be made to family-related leave and pay due to the burden they place on businesses, there seems to be little political appetite for this.
The principle that employees in a transferring business or outsourced activity should transfer with it is often useful for businesses. Although there may be some businesses that would like to dispose of TUPE, it is more likely that the government will make small changes to make it more business-friendly.
The right to paid holiday is well established and it would be unpopular with workers and trade unions if it is was removed. Therefore, a wholesale repeal of the Working Time Regulations 1998 is unlikely. The government may make minor amendments to certain aspects of the legislation and to limit rights of accrual and carryover of holiday which have been problematic for UK businesses.
Businesses do not need to take any action prior to 31 December 2020 and should await notification of any changes that the government may introduce in due course.
If you would like advice on Brexit Transition please contact Elizabeth Judson
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