On Monday 17th December 2018, the government announced that a number of legislative changes will be introduced to improve protection for agency and zero-hour workers. These include the following:
- The Employment Rights (Employment Particulars and Paid Annual Leave) (Amendment) Regulations 2018 – The regulations will ensure that a written statement of employment particulars must be given to the workers on the very first day of employment. Examples of these particulars include providing terms and conditions in relation to the hours of work and details regarding paid leave and the probationary period. Additionally, the rules for calculating a week’s holiday pay are also due to change when these regulations come into force on 6th April 2020.
- The Agency Workers (Amendment) Regulations 2018 – Under these regulations, the ‘Swedish derogation’ will be repealed by the government as it currently excludes agency workers from being entitled to the same pay as employees that were directly recruited by the employer. The regulations will also provide particular rights for agency workers to be entitled to the same working and employment conditions as directly recruited workers. These regulations are due to come into force on 6th April 2020.
- The Employment Rights (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2019 – The government will increase the penalties of breaching employment rights from £5,000 to £20,000 under these regulations. The updated regulations will also ensure that agency workers are given the right to receive a written statement of employment particulars. At present, a recruiter is only asked to provide a written statement to their employees. Sections 1 and 2 of these regulations will come into force on 6th April 2019 and the other sections will come into force on 6th April 2020.
These regulations have been outlined in the ‘Good Work Plan’ which has recently been introduced by the government as a way to further respond to the recommendations that have been made in the Taylor Review of modern working practices. For additional information regarding the Good Work Plan please click here.