From 25 June 2013 the following Employment law changes come into effect:
The Employment Rights Act 1996 will be amended so that a ‘disclosure’ made by a worker when they blow the whistle will only be protected if the worker reasonably believes it is made in the public interest. A disclosure no longer needs to be made “in good faith” although if it is not made in good faith, an employment tribunal can reduce compensation awarded by up to 25%. An employer may also be vicariously liable where a worker is subjected to detriment i.e. bullying or harassment, at the hands of a co-worker, as a result of their having blown the whistle. When faced with such claims, an employer has a potential defence where it took all reasonable steps to prevent the detriment complained of.
(2) Unfair dismissal and political opinion/affiliation
Where the alleged reason for dismissal relates to an employees’ political opinion/affiliation, a claim for unfair dismissal can now be raised by an employee who does not have the requisite qualifying service (one year’s service if they were employed prior to 6 April 2012 and two years’ service if they were employed from that date).
(3) Reduced cap on compensatory award for unfair dismissal
From 25 June 2013, the maximum compensatory award for straightforward unfair dismissal claims has been capped. Awards will now be the lower of one year’s salary or the statutory limit. The current statutory cap remains £74,200.
(4) Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) hearings
Judges will now sit alone during EAT hearings unless they choose to appoint two lay members to hear a claim with them.
For a full update on this year’s UK employment law changes and how they affect your organisation, register to attend our September annual employment law update Evolve sessions available in both Edinburgh and Glasgow. These sessions are one of the most popular in Scotland and amongst the first available to cover the 2013 changes. To register today click here
- Should you require advice on this or any other employment related matter please contact Head of our Employment team, Chris Leitch by clicking here or get in touch with your usual contact in our Employment Team by clicking here.
- Read our recent briefing on changes to the Tribunal fees system by clicking here
- View recent videos from our Evolve Employment Law Seminars – one of most widely attended in Scotland – by clicking here.
- Download the Evolve brochure by clicking here.
You can follow Chris Leitch on Twitter @ChrisLeitchTods – you can also keep up to date with the latest employment law developments with #evolvetods
About Our Employment Team
- The team is recommended by Chambers and Partners and Legal 500 and consists of specialist lawyers operating from both our Edinburgh and Glasgow offices. They are renowned for their wealth of experience in work involving TUPE, Contentious and Non-Contentious work, Advisory and all aspects of Employee work. Learn more about our Employment Law Team by clicking here.