Time off Employee Rights: When, how, why and where can you take it?

Time off Employee Rights: When, how, why and where can you take it?

Holiday-                     

5.6 weeks paid annual leave (pro rata for part-time workers)

Rest Breaks

Adult Workers:

Working Day Rest-      A rest break of 20 minutes if the working day is more than six hours.

Daily Rest-                   11 hours' uninterrupted rest per day.

Weekly Rest-               24 hours' uninterrupted rest per week (or 48 hours uninterrupted rest per                                      fortnight).

Night Workers-          Maximum of 8 hours work in any 24 hours (on average). Remember they                                       also have the right to a free health assessment.

Young workers (who are under 18 but over compulsory school age) have greater entitlements:

Working Day Rest-      A rest break of 30 minutes if the working day is more than four and a half hours

Daily Rest-                   12 hours' uninterrupted daily rest.

Weekly Rest-               48 hours' weekly rest.

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The changing face of personal injury claims

The changing face of personal injury claims

On the 30th April 2010 the way in which law firms handled personal injury claims resulting from low value road traffic accidents (those estimated to be worth less than £10,000) was radically overhauled. 

The traditional “letter of claim” sent by post to the person or company allegedly at fault was replaced with an online portal system overseen by the Ministry of Justice. Under the relevant Pre Action Protocol standardised forms for use with this system were created and defined stages in the claim process were set; stage 1 (issue of claim), stage 2 (medical evidence) and stage 3 (court proceedings). The system was designed to speed up the process for settling simple and low value claims for the injured party and setting a rigid framework for costs to keep them proportionate to the value of such claims.

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The Condensation Conundrum

The Condensation Conundrum

Condensation is an issue that will affect many landlords and tenants as the cold weather arrives and it can be a difficult issue to deal with as the lead article written by Tom Entwistle for @landlordZONE October pages shows – 

It will also have even more serious consequences for landlords if the proposed changes to the s21 process outlined in Sarah Teather’s Private Members’ Bill, which receives its second reading in November, becomes law.

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New Proposals for Debt Recovery

New Proposals for Debt Recovery

There are many areas of law within Civil Litigation where Claimants must follow a Pre-Action Protocol (PAP) before commencing any Court proceedings.

There is a general PAP for areas of law where a specific PAP does not apply. This PAP focuses on disclosing all relevant information prior to issuing proceedings and attempting alternative dispute resolution (ADR).

The aim of a PAP is for the parties to settle matters prior to issuing proceedings by laying all cards on the table early and assisting the Court with efficient management for those cases where Court cannot be avoided.

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New Child Maintenance Service

New Child Maintenance Service

From 11th August 2014 the new Child Maintenance Service began charging an application fee of £20 in order to submit a claim for child maintenance.  The fee does carry some exemptions, if you are a victim of Domestic Violence, under 19 years old or live in Northern Ireland then the application fee does not apply.

The most recent figures suggest that this step has had a huge impact on the number of parents seeking the help of the Child Maintenance Service.  The Government intended for the measure to encourage more co-operation and private arrangements, but charities involved with parents have serious doubts about the change.

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Recovery of Debts of £10,000.00 or less: The Small Claims Track - how it works.

If you are a small business or individual and are owed monies you can issue a county court claim against the debtor (once you have given sufficient notice of your intention to do so).  If a claim is issued and not defended you may apply for a Judgment against the debtor and thereafter enforce that Judgment by a method that is most appropriate.

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Driving and dementia - that very difficult discussion.

Driving and dementia - that very difficult discussion.

Like many of his generation, my father-in-law was a very proud man; a gentleman of a chivalrous age. He enjoyed the freedom that his car provided and heaven forbid the thought of being driven anywhere other than by taxi and, deary me, what an extravagance that would be!

Following his diagnosis with Alzheimer’s disease he had trouble understanding (or perhaps accepting?) the impact that the illness naturally had on his day-to-day life – and, in particular, upon his ability to drive.

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Advocates to have specialist training for sex cases.

Advocates to have specialist training for sex cases.

Ministry of Justice secretary Chris Grayling announced that publicly funded advocates, will have to undergo specialist training before being allowed to take sexual assault and rape cases under government plans to make the court process less traumatic for victims of crime.

By March 2015, the Ministry of Justice said it will be a requirement that all publicly funded solicitor and barristers must undertake 'approved specialist training' on working with vulnerable victims and witnesses in serious sexual cases.

It gave no further details. 

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Power of Attorney - all you need to know

Power of Attorney - all you need to know

Have you ever thought about what would happen if you had an accident, a stroke or developed dementia? We all hope to remain healthy as long as possible, however, there may come a time where we need help managing our affairs. A Lasting Power of Attorney gives chosen individuals legal authority to manage your affairs should there come a time that you not able to yourself.

What is a Lasting Power of Attorney?

A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document which allows you to appoint nominated decision makers (attorneys) to make certain decisions on your behalf if you are no longer able to make them for yourself.

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Bid to ban rip-off deals on pensions

Bid to ban rip-off deals on pensions

PENSION firms are to be banned from giving retirement advice in a bid to prevent the unscrupulous from ripping off savers.

Millions of workers are now set to get a better pension deal after Chancellor George Osborne yesterday announced the separation of sales from advice.

People will get free independent information about retirement options under a guidance guarantee which starts next April.

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"What's on the horizon"

"What's on the horizon"

What to expect……

30th/31st July – Holiday Pay

We've recently reported on the ongoing saga that is holiday pay, see articles here and here dealing with who is entitled to what and when. The cases of interest to all Employment Law Practitioners and Employers at the moment are Neal v Freightliner Ltd and Fulton and another v Bear Scotland Ltd which are due to be heard at the Employment Appeals Tribunal on 30 and 31 July 2014. 

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Pensions: enrolment and partnerships

Pensions: enrolment and partnerships

An employer must automatically enrol ‘eligible jobholders’ into a qualifying pension scheme. An eligible jobholder is a ‘worker’ who works or ordinarily works in the UK, is aged between 22 and state pension age, and receives ‘qualifying earnings’ which exceed the £10,000 annual earnings trigger for auto-enrolment.

As a result of the Supreme Court’s decision, LLP members are now deemed to be workers for whistleblowing legislation purposes. The Pensions Act 2008 also uses a very similar definition for ‘worker’, and on this basis it is very likely that, for the majority of LLPs, their members will be ‘workers’.

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Equality impact

Equality impact

The Administrative Court recently quashed a council’s decision to revoke a London soup kitchen’s licence to operate in an authority-owned car park (Blake and others v London Borough of Waltham Forest [2014] EWHC 1027). The court found that the council had breached its public sector equality duty (PSED) in section 149 of the Equality Act 2010.

In giving judgment on 7 April 2014, Mrs Justice Simler stressed the ‘need for clear well-informed decision-making when assessing potentially grave adverse impacts on some of the most vulnerable members of society… in the current economic climate’.  

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Golden Years: Pension payouts

Golden Years: Pension payouts

According to national figures many pensioner's incomes have risen by nearly £1,000 a year and they now receive almost as much as the average salary.

Pensioners worried over paltry returns on their savings and rising bills are finally seeing the financial pressure ease. It is the first time in three years that pensioners’ incomes have been recorded as going up faster than inflation.

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Big bold global push to beat Dementia

 Big bold global push to beat Dementia

Dementia "one of the greatest enemies of humanity" says PM David Cameron

In December 2013 the G8 summit on dementia was held in London. Its aims were to:

  • stimulate greater investment and innovation in dementia research
  • improve the prevention and treatment of dementia
  • improve quality of life for people with dementia

This focus on the issues raised by dementia nationally and globally was repeated at the recent G7 dementia summit where David Cameron delivered a speech  calling for a "big, bold global push” to beat dementia.

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Right to request flexible working from 30 June 2014

Right to request flexible working from 30 June 2014

Once again it’s all change in the world of Employment Law and HR.

From 30 June 2014 the statutory request for flexible working will extend to all employees providing they have 26 weeks' continuous employment at the date the request is made.

Only one request may be made under the statutory scheme in any 12-month period and must be made in writing. The rights do not extend to agency workers or self employed.

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Forced Marriages Policing Act 2014

A new law has been passed by the government in England and Wales making it a criminal offence to force people into marriage.

From today, parents who force their children to marry can be punished by up to seven years in prison. Previously, courts have only been able to issue civil orders to prevent victims being forced into marriage.

The law will give victims the confidence to come forward and protect thousands of people each year. It will apply if people are forced into marriage in England and Wales, as well as to UK nationals at risk of being forced into marriage abroad

This new law has been welcomed by many different religions and groups’ throughout the world.

The complete article by the BBC news will bring a better definition regarding forced marriages in relation to the Criminalisation - under the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.   

Nicola Haines Trainee Solicitor