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What Will Change in Employment Law in 2022?

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2022 is destined to be another year of change in employment. Here’s what you need to know.

Covid-19

Among the important questions will be whether more employers decide to bring in mandatory vaccination and whether some decide to cut sick pay for unvaccinated staff (as employers such as IKEA, Ocado and Next have done). We’ll also start to see the first tranche of claims reaching the Employment Tribunal where employers have applied “no jab no job” policies.

The return to the office?

Whatever Government rule changes happen around home or office working, the big issue for employers is still going to be that they have a duty of care to look out for the health & safety of their staff. Risk assessments, therefore (whether that be of an office or someone’s home working setup) are still going to be key.

Extra bank holiday

To mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, Friday 3 June will be an extra bank holiday in 2022. The late May bank holiday has also been moved to Thursday 2 June to make for a four-day weekend.

Technically, not all employees will automatically be entitled to this extra bank holiday, because it will all depend on the specific wording of their employment contracts. For example, if an employee’s contract says that they’re entitled to a certain number of days annual leave plus the usual bank holidays, there’s an argument to say that 3 June is not a “usual” bank holiday. Lots of employers will of course simply give their staff the benefit of the doubt, but others (particularly those who are struggling with staffing shortages) may want to take a stricter line. Reviewing the terms of employment contracts and the wording of holiday clauses in advance of 3 June is advisable.

National Minimum Wage increases

From 1 April 2022, the set rates for National Living Wage and National Minimum Wage will go up as follows:

Flexible working requests for all

The Government is expected to publish plans in the coming year for employees to be able to request flexible working from the first day of their employment. At present, employees must have been employed for 26 weeks before they can make a request.

Please get in touch with Owen John on 02920 829 118 or [email protected] for a free, no-obligation chat about how he can guide you on some of these changes.