Employment Legislation Update - April 2019

April is always busy time for Employment Law Updates, here’s our list for the coming weeks:-

Implementation date: 29 March 2019

Technical amendments to employment law to ensure smooth Brexit take effect

The Government introduces legislation to ensure that employment laws continue to operate effectively on the day the UK leaves the EU. The legislation makes minor technical changes, including amending and removing inappropriate language and references.

Implementation date: 1 April 2019

National minimum wage rises

The hourly rate of the national living wage, the rate for workers who are aged 25 and over, increases from £7.83 to £8.21. The national minimum wage for workers aged at least 21 but under 25 rises from £7.38 to £7.70 per hour. The rate for workers who are aged at least 18 but under 21 increases from £5.90 to £6.15 per hour; the rate for workers aged 16 or 17 rises from £4.20 to £4.35 per hour; and the apprentice rate rises from £3.70 to £3.90 per hour. The accommodation offset increases from £7.00 to £7.55 per day.

Implementation date: 6 April 2019

Employment tribunal award limits increase

The maximum amount of a week's pay for the purpose of calculating the basic award for unfair dismissal and a redundancy payment, which increases to £525, and the maximum amount of the compensatory award for unfair dismissal, which increases to £86,444.
The order applies where the event that gives rise to the entitlement to the payment occurs on or after 6 April 2019.

Requirement for payslips to state hours worked where pay varies

The Employment Rights Act 1996 (Itemised Pay Statement) (Amendment) Order 2018 (SI 2018/147) provides that, where an employee's pay varies by reference to time worked, employers must include the number of hours for which the employee is being paid on his or her itemised pay statement. The change is designed to make it easier for hourly paid staff to ensure that they are paid correctly and to address underpayments.

Statutory sick pay rises

The rate of statutory sick pay rises from £92.05 to £94.25 per week.

Lower earnings limit for national insurance contributions increases

The lower earnings limit for primary Class 1 national insurance contributions increases to £118 per week.

Increase in minimum contribution level for pensions auto-enrolment takes effect

The minimum level of employer contribution into a pensions auto-enrolment scheme increases from 2% to 3%, with an increase to the employee contribution from 3% to 5%. The total minimum contribution increases from 5% to 8%.

Maximum penalty for aggravated breach increases to £20,000

The maximum penalty that an employment tribunal can order for an aggravated breach of a worker's rights rises from £5,000 to £20,000.

Implementation date: 7 April 2019

Statutory maternity pay and other family-related statutory pay rates increase

The rates of statutory maternity pay, statutory paternity pay, statutory adoption pay and statutory shared parental pay from £145.18 to £148.68 per week.