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Employment Law Updates

1 January 2021 - New Immigration Scheme 

The new immigration scheme came into force for all applicants regardless of their nationality.

1 April 2021 - National Minimum Wage and Living Wage 

Following the confirmation of the National Minimum Wage rates for 2021/2022, the government has also chosen to accept the recommendation from the Low Pay Commission, which means that 23 and 24-year-olds will now be included within the National Living Wage bracket instead of the current 25 Years Plus bracket.

The rates from 1 April 2021 are:

• £8.91 per hour - 23 yrs old and over (National Living Wage)

• £8.36 per hour - 21-22 yrs old

• £6.56 per hour - 18-20 yrs old

• £4.62 per hour - 16-17 yrs old

• £4.30 for apprentices under 19 or 19 or over who are in the first year of apprenticeship.

6 April 2021 - IR35 Changes 

IR35 is a set of complex rules that affect an individual’s tax and National Insurance Contributions (NICs) if he or she is contracted to work for an intermediary. Its stated aim is to prevent workers using limited companies, through which they effectively work as employees, without paying the relevant tax.

The IR35 changes were due to come into effect in 2020 but were delayed by a year due to coronavirus. From April 2021, eligible large and medium-sized organisations engaging contractors through intermediary companies will be responsible for assessing the employment status of those contractors. Under the new rules, where workers are engaged through their own companies, the responsibility to apply IR35, and to pay any associated tax and National Insurance contributions, will fall to the private company, agency or other third party paying the worker’s company.​  See our IR35 blog on this subject for further details.



National Minimum Wage and Living Wage - 1 April 2020

The rates from 1 April 2020 are:

• £8.72 per hour - 25 yrs old and over (National living wage)

• £8.20 per hour - 21-24 yrs old

• £6.45 per hour - 18-20 yrs old

• £4.55 per hour - 16-17 yrs old

• £4.15 for apprentices under 19 or 19 or over who are in the first year of apprenticeship.


Increase in Statutory Maternity, Paternity, Adoption and Shared Parental Leave Pay -

5 April 2020

Rate of Statutory Maternity, Paternity, Adoption and Shared Parental Leave will increase from £148.68 to £151.20 per week.


Increase in Statutory Sick Pay - 6 April 2020

Rate of statutory sick pay will increase from £94.25 to £95.85 per week.


Changes in tax for termination payments above £30,000 - 6 April 2020

Employers will be liable to pay Class 1A national insurance contributions on termination payments above £30,000 that are subject to income tax by the employee. The new measure will be introduced in the National Insurance Contributions Bill.


Right to receive written statement of terms and conditions from Day One - 6 April 2020

A new law making a written statement of main terms and conditions a day-one right for workers and employees to be introduced.


Amendment to mandatory information in written statements - 6 April 2020

Amendments to mandatory information required within a written statement of main terms and conditions to be introduced. There are significant changes, if you contact us we can provide you with a list of the changes set out ​in the Employment Rights Act 1996. This will mean that many companies now need to update their main statement of terms and conditions document, more commonly referred to by Employers as the Contract of Employment. 


Holiday Pay reference period change - 6 April 2020

New law extending the holiday pay reference period from 12 to 52 weeks to be introduced.


Abolition of the Swedish derogation relating to pay for agency workers - 6 April 2020

The Agency Workers (Amendment) Regulations 2019 (SI 2019/724) abolish the Swedish derogation. So, what do you need to do or be aware of? This affects the contract for agency workers who currently have a Swedish Derogation in their contract. By no later than 30 April 2020, agencies must give these agency workers a written statement that this derogation no longer applies.


Parental Bereavement Leave Rights - April 2020

The Parental Bereavement (Leave and Pay) Bill provides at least two weeks leave for employees following the loss of a child under the age of 18. Employees with 26 weeks continuous service will be entitled to paid leave at the statutory rate and other employees will be entitled to unpaid leave.


Employee Information and Consultation - 6 April 2020

A new Law lowering the threshold for employers required to set up Employee Information and Consultation arrangements from 10% of employees to 2%.


Do you need further help with implementing these changes in the law? We can help you gain peace of mind and prevent exposing your business to any risks. Get in touch to find out how we can help.


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