Changes to Tupe
Significant changes to the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 ("TUPE") are due to come into force on 31 January 2014. The changes include:-
- A new provision which enables the transferee (ie. the post-transfer employer) to consult with representatives of the transferring employees prior to the transfer for the purposes of complying with collective redundancy rules.
- The rules on service provision changes will remain, but the legislation will clarify that for there to be a TUPE service provision change, the activities carried on after the change in service provision must be "fundamentally or essentially the same" as those carried on before it.
- Employee liability information will have to be given 28 days before the transfer, rather than the current 14 days.
Exteneded time period for pension automatic enrolment
The time period available to employers for auto-enrolling eligible jobholders into a qualifying pension scheme will increase from one month to six weeks from 1 April 2014.
Early conciliation introduced
The Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013 introduced a new procedure under which potential employment tribunal claimants are required to lodge details of their proposed claim with ACAS prior to issuing their claim. ACAS will then offer the parties an opportunity of conciliation with an ACAS appointed conciliation officer, in an attempt to avoid the matter proceeding to an Employment Tribunal Claim. This change will be effective from 6 April 2014.
Managing sickness absence
A new approach to managing sickness absence could be introduced as soon as spring 2014 (Government confirmation is awaited). The new Health and Work Service will offer free occupational health assistance to employees, employers and GP's, including an independent assessment of employees who have been absent due to illness for more than four weeks.
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