Legal timetables

Information for CIPD members on developments in UK employment law since January 2014. Covers Acts of Parliament, Statutory Instruments (SIs), European Directives, Codes of Practice and future proposed legislation.

For a weekly round up of the latest developments in employment law go to our Latest news in employment law. More legal resources can be found in our Employment Law at Work area.

 
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    Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015

    Royal Assent 26 March 2015. The Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015, which aims to support small businesses, contains a number of employment law measures

     
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    Enterprise Bill

    The Enterprise Bill was introduced to the House of Lords on 16 September 2015 and includes provisions on capping exit payments for public sector workers, apprenticeships and Sunday working.

     
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    Apprenticeship levy

    Expected to come into force on 6 April 2017. The government will be introducing a levy on certain organisations to help fund 3 million new apprenticeships during this Parliament.

     
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    National Living Wage

    Coming into force on 1 April 2016. The National Minimum Wage (Amendment) Regulations 2016 will amend the National Minimum Wage Regulations 2015 to add a National Living Wage rate of £7.20 an hour for workers aged 25 years and above.

     
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    Posted Workers Directive

    The Posted Workers Enforcement Directive which was adopted by the EU Council in May 2014 is intended to stop worker abuse and ensure that posted workers enjoy their rights relating to holiday, pay etc.

     
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    Scotland Bill

    The Scotland Bill which was introduced to Parliament in May 2015 will devolve more powers to the Scottish Assembly and deliver on the proposals set out the Smith Commission report

     
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    Recruitment sector regulation

    On 13 October 2015 the government published a further consultation on changes to the regulatory framework for the recruitment sector. This follow a consultation launched in 2013 by the previous government. In January 2016 it also issued a call for evidence on internal-only recruitment practices in the public sector.

     
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    Trade Union Bill

    The Trade Union Bill was introduced to Parliament on 15 July 2015 and aims to reform strike legislation. It extends to Great Britain.

     
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    Data Protection Directive reform

    The European Commission, European Parliament and European Council have reached an agreement on data protection reform.

     
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    Northern Ireland - Employment Law Bill

    The Employment Bill was introduced to the Northern Ireland Assembly on 7 December 2015 and includes provisions on a new early conciliation service, new rules and procedures for employment tribunals and changes to whistleblowing legislation.

     
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    Work-life balance proposals

    A proposed revised Maternity Leave Directive was withdrawn in July 2015and the European Commission adopted a Roadmap for improving work-life balance in working families.

     
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    Modern Slavery Act 2015

    The Modern Slavery Act 2015 includes provisions requiring all commercial organisations carrying on business in the UK with a total turnover of £36m or more to complete a statement for each financial year of the organisation. This is expected to come into force in October 2015.

     
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    Zero hours contracts

    The Government is introducing a number of measures to ban exclusivity clauses in zero hours contracts and has also promised further information, guidance and advice for both employers and employees on the fair use of the contracts.

     
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    Exploitation of workers consultation

    On 13 October 2015 the Government published a consultation setting out proposals to support a proposed new Director Labour Market Enforcement and improve the effectiveness of the enforcement of employment rights to protect workers from exploitation.

     
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    Deregulation Act 2015

    Royal Assent 26 March 2015. The Deregulation Act 2015 aims to reduce the burden of excessive regulation on businesses and repeal legislation which is no longer of any practical use. Employment provisions include the introduction of approved English apprenticeships and removal of employment tribunals’ power to issue wider recommendations in successful discrimination cases.

     
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    Immigration Bill

    The Bill was introduced to the House of Commons on 17 September 2015 and contains provisions on illegal working, the introduction of a skills charge and a new duty on public authorities to ensure that each person who works for them in a customer-facing role speaks fluent English.

     
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    Termination payments: tax and National Insurance treatment

    On 24 July 2015 the Government launched a consultation on how it can make the tax and National Insurance contributions (NICs) treatment of termination payments simpler and fairer. The consultation closes on 16 October 2015.

     
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    Northern Ireland - tribunals

    On 3 July 2015 the Department for Employment and Learning launched a consultation on proposed new rules and procedures for industrial tribunals and the Fair Employment Tribunal.

     
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    Employment tribunal fees review

    On 11 June 2015 the Ministry of Justice published Terms of reference for a review of the impact of the fees and the fees remission scheme

     
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    Code of practice on handling flexible working requests

    Came into force 30 June 2014. Acas has published a statutory Code of practice on handling requests for flexible working in a reasonable manner. Good practice guidance has also been published to supplement the Code.

     
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    Whistleblowing

    The Government has implemented a number of measures to strengthen whistleblowing legislation, some of which are contained in the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015.

     
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    European Union Referendum Bill

    The European Union Referendum Bill will allow the government to hold a referendum on whether the UK and Gibraltar should remain in the European Union (EU). The referendum must be held no later than December 2017.

     
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    Consolidation of worker information and consultation directives

    The European Commission has launched a public consultation with the social partners (representatives of employers and employees) on the possible consolidation of the Collective redundancies directive, Acquired rights directive and the Information and consultation of workers directive. The consultation runs from 10 April 2015 to 30 June 2015.

     
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    Work and Families Act (Northern Ireland) 2015

    Royal Assent 8 January 2015. The Work and Families Act (Northern Ireland) 2015 introduces a number of changes, including the new system of shared parental leave and the extension of the right to request flexible working to all employees who have worked for their employer for 26 weeks or more.

     
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    Reserve forces

    In 2013 the Ministry of Defence published a White Paper, Reserves in the future force 2020: valuable and valued which set out the future relationships that the Government seeks with reservists, their employers and society.

     
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    Children and Families Act 2014

    Royal Assent 13 March 2014. The Children and Families Act 2014 introduces a new shared parental leave and pay system and a right to time off for antenatal care, brings adoption leave and pay entitlements in line with those of birth parents and extends the right to request flexible working.

     
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    Acas Code of disciplinary and grievance procedures amendment

    Came into force on 11 March 2015. A revised Acas Code of practice on disciplinary and grievance procedures has been published. The changes have been made following the case Toal and another v GB Oils in which the Employment Appeal Tribunal held that the Code did not accurately reflect the law on the right to be accompanied, especially the law relating to the need to make a reasonable request.

     
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    Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013

    Royal Assent 25 April 2013. The Act contains a wide variety of provisions to reform employment law, including Acas early conciliation, greater use of settlement agreements, abolition of statutory discrimination questionnaires and changes to whistleblowing protections.

     
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    Free Movement of Workers Directive

    On 14 April 2014 the European Commission adopted an enforcement Directive to facilitate the free movement of workers in the European Union by preventing discrimination and reducing the incidence of unfair practices.

     
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    Working Time Directive review

    Adopted November 2003. Details of proposals to revise the Directive, particularly the provisions relating to the 48-hour week opt-out and on-call time.

     
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    Defence Reform Act 2014

    Changes under the Defence Reform Act 2014 affecting reservists and their employers came into force on 1 October 2014.

     
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    Employment status review

    On 6 October 2014 the Department for Business, Information and Skills (BIS) launched an employment review which aims to clarify and potentially strengthen the employment status of workers.

     
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    National Minimum Wage (Amendment) (No 2) Regulations 2014

    Came into force on 1 October 2014. The national minimum wage (NMW) rates increased under the National Minimum Wage (Amendment) (No 2) Regulations.

     
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    Non-seasonal workers directive

    On 5 February 2014 the European Parliament adopted new rules to regulate the employment of non-EU seasonal workers. Member states have two and a half years to implement them.

     
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    Codes of practice on preventing illegal working

    Came into force on 16 May 2014. The codes of practice provides guidance for employers on preventing illegal working and how to avoid race discrimination when complying with their duty to carry out pre-employment immigration checks under the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006.

     
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    National Insurance Contributions Act 2014

    Royal Assent 13 March 2014. The National Insurance Contributions Act 2014 contains provisions to reduce the costs of employment and support small businesses, including from 6 April 2014 reducing employer national insurance contributions (NICs) bills each year by entitling every business and charity to a £2,000 Employment Allowance.

     
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    Statutory sick pay Order and Regulations 2014

    Came into force 6 April 2014. The Order and Regulations bring in changes to sick pay recovery and reporting.

     
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    Courts and Tribunals Fees (Miscellaneous Amendments) Order 2014

    Came into force on 6 April 2014. Under the Courts and Tribunals Fees (Miscellaneous Amendments) Order 2014 fees for certain types of employment tribunal claims increased.

     
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    Employment Rights (Increase of Limits) Order 2014

    Came into force on 6 April 2014. The Employment Rights (Increase of Limits) Order 2014 increases the limit on certain tribunal awards.

     
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    Welfare Benefits Up-rating Order 2014

    Came force on 6 April 2014. The rates of SSP, SMP, SAP, SPP and ASPP increased.

     
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    Equal Treatment of Self Employed Workers directive

    Adopted on 7 July 2010 and implements equal treatment between self-employed men and women. Member states have two years to implement the Directive.

     
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    Subject access code of practice

    Published in August 2013 and revised in March 2014. The code of practice provides advice for organisations on how to deal with requests from individuals for personal information.

     
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    National Minimum Wage (Variation of Financial Penalty) Regulations 2014

    Came into force on 7 March 2014. The Regulations increase the penalties for employers flouting national minimum wage (NMW) legislation.

     
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    Collective Redundancies and Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employees) (Amendment) Regulations 2014

    Came into force on 31 January 2014. A number of changes have been be made to TUPE 2006 under the Collective Redundancies and Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) (Amendment) Regulations 2013.

     
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    Northern Ireland employment law consultation

    As a result of recent and proposed employment law changes in Great Britain, the Department for Employment and Learning Northern Ireland (DELNI) launched a consultation on a number of employment law areas on 16 July 2013.

     
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    Working Time Regulations changes

    Details of the consultation on Government proposals to amend the Working Time Regulations 1998 in relation to the carrying over of annual leave.