Employment Law Changes in England and Wales: Key Dates

An overview of the recent changes in England & Wales in the last year.

Recent changes

Date Development Comment
2019    
January 2019
01 January onwards The corporate governance reporting regulations (the Companies (Miscellaneous Reporting) Regulations 2018) and the new Corporate Governance Code applied to company reporting on financial years starting on or after 01 January 2019. Further details available here.
09 January The government consultation seeking views on mandatory Ethnicity Pay Reporting (EPR) closed. Further details are available here.
11 January  The Law Commission's consultation on reforming employment law hearing structures closed.  Further details are available here.
25 January Second reading in House of Commons of Workers (Definition and Rights) Bill 2017-2019.
 
31 January Submissions closed for the Women and Equalities Committee inquiry into non-disclosure agreements (NDA). Further details are available here.
March 2019    
01 March Government consultation on whether certain aspects of the National Minimum Wage legislation should be amended closed. Further details available.
05 March Government published the ‘Off-payroll working rules from April 2020’ policy paper and consultation document, focusing on the detailed design of the reforms. Further details available.
08 March FCA published a policy statement (PS19/7), setting out the final rules on the new public directory for checking the details of key individuals working in financial services. Further details available.
28 March Government consultation ‘Variations in Sex Characteristics Call for Evidence’ closed. Further details available.
30 March Public sector employers are required to publish their gender pay gap report for the year 2018/19 by this date. Further details available.
April 2019    
01 April

National Living Wage for workers aged 25 and over increased from £7.83 to £8.21 per hour.

National Minimum Wage (NMW) rates increased.

Further details available.
04 April Private and voluntary sector employers in England, Wales and Scotland with at least 250 employees are required to publish their gender pay gap report for the year 2018/19 by this date. Further details available.
06 April

The maximum compensatory award for unfair dismissal increased to £86,444 (from £83,682) where the effective date of termination is on or after 06 April 2019.

Further details available.

06 April Employers required to provide all workers with an itemised payslip and state the number of hours being paid on the payslip, where wages vary according to time worked. Further details available.
06 April Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) increased to £94.25 per week. Further details available.
06 April For those made redundant on or after 06 April 2019, weekly pay is capped at £525 and the maximum statutory redundancy pay is £15,750. Further details available.
07 April Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP), Statutory Paternity Pay (SPP), Shared Parental Pay (ShPP) and Statutory Adoption Pay (SAP) increased to £148.68. Further details available.
16 April Draft legislation EU directive protecting whistle-blowers formally approved by European Parliament. Further details available.
29 April BEIS consultation on confidentiality clauses/NDAs (formally titled “Confidentiality clauses: measures to prevent misuse in situations of workplace harassment or discrimination”) closed. Further details available.
May 2019    
28 May Government consultation ‘Off-payroll working rules from April 2020’ closed. Further details available.
June 2019    
04 June HM Courts and Tribunals Service issued a quarterly update providing an overview of the Reform programme and updates on individual projects. Further details available.
13 June The Council of the EU adopted the EU work-life balance directive. Further details available.
July 2019    
26 July FCA published the final rules for the SMCR in its policy statement (PS19/20). Further details available.
October 2019    
02 October Government consultation on sexual harassment in the workplace closes. Further details available.
06 October Government consultation on establishing a new single enforcement body for employment rights closes. Further details available.
11 October

Government consultation on one-sided flexibility (addressing unfair flexible working practices) closes.

Further details available.

11 October Government consultation on proposals to support families (neonatal leave and pay section) closes. Further details available.
11 October Government consultation on proposals to support families (transparency of flexible working and family related leave and pay policies) closes. Further details available.
November 2019    
29 November Government consultation on proposals to support families (parental leave and pay section) closes. Further details available.
December 2019    
09 December The SM&CR will be extended to all firms under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000. Further details available.
2020    
April 2020    
04 April The third round of gender pay gap reports must be published by employers with more than 250 employees. Further details available.
06 April

Employment Rights (Employment Particulars and Paid Annual Leave (Amendment) Regulations 2018 (SI 2018/1378) come into force.

Further details available.

06 April The Agency Workers (Amendment) Regulations 2019 are due to come into force and will remove the Swedish derogation from the Agency Workers Regulations 2010 to give agency workers a right to pay parity with direct employees after 12 weeks. Further details available.
06 April The public sector off-payroll working rules (IR35) will be extended to the private sector. From this date, large and medium-sized private companies will be required to follow the IR35 rules.
Further details available.
06 April Class 1A NIC employer charges on termination payments of more than £30,000 are due to come into effect on this date.
Further details available.
06 April

The Employment Rights (Employment Particulars and Paid Annual Leave (Amendment) Regulations 2018 (SI 2018/1378), which were laid before Parliament on 17 December 2018, implement parts of the government's Good Work Plan and are due to come into force. The new regulations will bring into force more of the commitments of the Good Work Plan, including:

  • an increase in the maximum financial penalty that a tribunal may order in respect of an employer’s aggravated breach of employment law from £5,000 to £20,000
  • extending the right to a written statement of particulars of employment (a section 1 statement) to all workers, not just employees
  • lowering the threshold required for employees to request the establishment of an information and consultation body from 10% to 2% (subject to a minimum of 15 employees), and
  • in relation to agency workers, the abolition of the Swedish derogation provisions, meaning that all agency workers will have the right to pay parity after 12 weeks.
Further details available.
April (exact date tbc) Executive pay gap reports are required to be published by UK listed companies with more than 250 UK employees by this date (exact date to be confirmed). Further details available.
April (exact date tbc) The Parental Bereavement (Leave and Pay) Act 2018 is expected to come into effect (exact date to be confirmed). This legislation will entitle employed parents to a day-one right to two weeks' leave if they lose a child under the age of 18 or suffer a stillbirth from 24 weeks of pregnancy. Further details available.

This document (and any information accessed through links in this document) is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from any action as a result of the contents of this document.