Today sees the first of this year’s biannual commencement dates for the introduction of new employment legislation.
Many employers are already focusing their attentions on the second wave of legislation, which come into force on 1 October, and will include the long-awaited regulations outlawing age discrimination. But April also sees a number of significant developments.
Here, XpertHR provides an overview of what to expect this month, together with links to Personneltoday.com’s extensive online resources on the key changes, and what they will mean for HR practitioners.
New Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) (TUPE) Regulations 2006 come into force
These update the TUPE Regulations 1981. They provide more comprehensive coverage for service contracting operations such as cleaning, catering, security work and refuse collection; place a requirement on the transferor to notify the transferee of the employment liabilities that will be transferring; give more flexibility in the application of the regulations in relation to the transfer of an insolvent business; and clarify the circumstances in which employers can make lawful transfer-related dismissals and negotiate transfer-related changes for ‘economic, technical or organisational reasons’.
For more on TUPE, go to
Workplace noise exposure controls tightened
The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 impose duties on employers to protect both staff who may be exposed to risk from exposure to noise at work, and others who might be affected by that work. They implement the EU Physical Agents (Noise) Directive, which aims to protect staff from risks to their health arising from exposure to noise.
For more on the Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005, go to:
Statutory Sick Pay rises
The standard rate of Statutory Sick Pay is increased to 70.05 per week.
For more on sick pay, go to:
Statutory Sick Pay (General) Amendment Regulations 2006 come into force (10 April 2006)
These amend the Statutory Sick Pay (General) Regulations 1982 to provide that a person is deemed incapable of work if they are excluded or abstain from work in accordance with a request or notice in writing made under a piece of legislation that is intended to prevent the spread of a relevant disease.
For more on sick pay, go to:
New racial equality code of practice
The Commission for Racial Equality introduces its revised code of practice, which provides recommendations and guidance on avoiding racial discrimination and harassment in employment, and outlines employers’ legal obligations.
For more on racial equality, go to:
‘Unmeasured working time’ exemption is removed
Amendments to the 1998 Working Time Regulations will remove the exemption from limits on the maximum weekly working time in cases where a worker’s time was partly unmeasured, or self-determined, from the limits of the regulations.
For more on working time, go to:
New duty to consult on pension changes
New regulations will require employers with 150 or more employees to consult with members before making major changes to pension schemes.
For more on pensions, go to:
Pensions tax regime is simplified
The eight existing tax regimes covering pensions are swept away and replaced by a simplified system.
Gangmasters (Appeals) Regulations 2006 come into force
These regulations provide for an appeals procedure against decisions of the Gangmasters Licensing Authority, under the Gangmasters (Licensing) Act 2004, to refuse to grant a licence, to impose conditions to which a licence is subject, to modify or revoke a licence, or to refuse to transfer a licence.
For more on gangmasters, go to:
See the full employment law timetable online at www.personneltoday.com/timetable