New rules for new members

How much more complicated can UK employment law get? Yet another new wrinkle is introduced this month with the accession of 10 additional countries to the European Union. While the addition of these countries promises to offer intriguing new dimensions to Europe’s economic picture and social dynamics, it also complicates hiring issues for UK employers, and adds to their challenges as a sort of deputised immigration officer.

Ten countries are entering the EU. But the citizens of eight of these countries will be treated one way while those of the other two will be treated another way.

We focus on European issues this month in a special package of stories that will hopefully enlighten you and help you to better understand your responsibilities and your recruitment opportunities under EU expansion. As part of our European focus, we also consider the European Court of Justice and outline some of the previous decisions that heavily impact UK employment.

Because of the importance of our European focus, two of our regular offerings – Case round up and From the reference manual – are taking a brief respite this month, but will return in June.

With this issue, we also step up our focus on UK industries and employment law issues pertinent to individual sectors. This month we spotlight the construction industry. Over the coming months we will look at UK industry sectors such as retail, travel and leisure and more.

Do share with us your thoughts on these and other topics as they appear in Employers’ Law.

DeeDee Doke, Editor

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