Employment law changes effective from April 2024

22 April 2024

The following changes came into force from 6 April 2024.

Holiday entitlement and pay

The rules about payments that should be included in the calculation of holiday pay have been confirmed. Rolled up holiday pay has been reintroduced for irregular hours workers.

The right to carry over holiday has been extended to circumstances where the worker has not been able to take leave because the employer has failed to recognise the worker's right to holiday, has not given them an opportunity or encouraged them to do so, or informed them that untaken holiday will be lost. 

Further details are available here.

What should we do?

  • Consider whether to introduce rolled-up holiday pay for irregular workers
  • Check that you are calculating holiday pay correctly for the first 4 weeks and remaining 1.6 weeks' holiday
  • Consider whether employees are correctly categorised as self-employed
  • Send regular reminders to staff to use their holiday and make arrangement to allow them to do so
  • Update your holiday policy and contracts of employment if necessary

Flexible working

Employees can make a flexible working application from day one of their employment and can make up to 2 applications in any 12-month period. The employer must deal with the application within a 2-month period and must hold a meeting with the employee if the application is not agreed.

What should we do?

  • Review and amend flexible working policy
  • Consider flexible working for roles at the point of advertising a vacancy
  • Update managers on how to deal with requests

Redundancy protections

The right to be offered any available suitable alternative role in a redundancy situation has been extended to employees who are pregnant, on adoption or shared parental leave and 18 months after the birth or adoption. Further details are available here.

What should we do?

  • Review and amend policies – maternity, adoption, shared parental leave, redundancy
  • Consider record-keeping for early-stage pregnancies and dates of childbirth

Carer's leave

A new entitlement to carer's leave has been introduced giving carers a right to 1 week's unpaid leave for arranging care for a dependant with a long-term care need. This is a 'day one' right. Further details are available here.

What should we do?

  • Introduce a carer's leave policy or update existing leave policies.
  • Implement a self-certification form for carer's leave.
  • Consider whether to offer enhanced pay and update employment contracts if offering paid leave.
  • Update managers on the new right to leave on the changes to how paternity leave can be taken.

Paternity leave

Fathers and partners can take paternity leave and pay as two non-consecutive blocks of one week and the notice required to take leave has been reduce to 28 days. Paternity leave can be taken at any point in the first year after the birth or adoption of their child.

What should we do?

  • Review and update paternity leave policies.
  • Update managers on the changes to how paternity leave can be taken.

New rates and limits

New National Minimum Wage rates, rates of statutory pay and limits for compensation have been introduced. Our factsheet of rates is available here.

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