Cover image of The Employment Law & HR Podcast
(7)
Business
News
Business News

The Employment Law & HR Podcast

Updated 4 days ago

Business
News
Business News
Read more

An update on the Law and best practice for managing and recruiting staff and for dealing with any issues that may arise. An easy to listen to legal and practical update.

Read more

An update on the Law and best practice for managing and recruiting staff and for dealing with any issues that may arise. An easy to listen to legal and practical update.

iTunes Ratings

7 Ratings
Average Ratings
3
3
0
0
1

Enjoyable podcast!

By Malifanz - Dec 01 2017
Read more
As an American employer lawyer, I appreciate hearing about the differences between US and UK employment law.

Great podcast

By 1R3L& - Nov 26 2017
Read more
Listening to Alison has been extremely helpful in understanding all of the intricacies of employment law. I always enjoy the topics and find them to be very informative.

iTunes Ratings

7 Ratings
Average Ratings
3
3
0
0
1

Enjoyable podcast!

By Malifanz - Dec 01 2017
Read more
As an American employer lawyer, I appreciate hearing about the differences between US and UK employment law.

Great podcast

By 1R3L& - Nov 26 2017
Read more
Listening to Alison has been extremely helpful in understanding all of the intricacies of employment law. I always enjoy the topics and find them to be very informative.
Cover image of The Employment Law & HR Podcast

The Employment Law & HR Podcast

Updated 4 days ago

Read more

An update on the Law and best practice for managing and recruiting staff and for dealing with any issues that may arise. An easy to listen to legal and practical update.

Rank #1: Having Difficult Conversations: Top Tips

Podcast cover
Read more

In this episode of the podcast I discuss the importance of managing difficult or contentious conversations successfully.

In this episode I will cover:
  • What difficult conversations are.
  • Why we avoid having them.
  • The dangers of avoiding these conversations.
  • My top tips on how to carry out these conversations successfully. 
Action Points
  1. It should not be a surprise - Ensure that you are holding regular conversations about the required standards and performance.
  2. Conquer your fears - The conversation in your mind is always worse than that of reality.
  3. Change your mindset - A difficult conversation tends to go best when you think about it as just a normal conversation.
  4. Be prepared - You need to ensure that the evidence backs up what you are trying to achieve.
  5. Be positive - Spin your questions with a positive approach to open the lines of communication and have a positive dialogue.
  6. Handle reactions with care - Acknowledge emotions and respond with kindness and empathy.
  7. Cut out all distractions - Give your whole, undivided attention to the conversation.
  8. Be consistent - Hold all your employees accountable to the same performance expectations.
  9. Keep it confidential - Builds trust and confidence.
  10. Summarise your understanding and agree a way forward - Encourage your employee to come up with the solution.

Please do leave any comments, ideas and best practice below. Please ensure that any comments are respectful to all views and opinions.

As part of our HR Harbour annual subscription service for employers we provide guidance and training for employers, supervisors and managers. If you would like to know more about the HR Harbour Service and how you can get unlimited support from as little as £198 per month please contact me for a no obligation discussion - alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or you can find full details here: HR Harbour

Don't forget you can contact us by telephone 01983 897003, 01722 653001 or 023 8098 2006

Photo by Etienne Boulanger on Unsplash

Aug 20 2019

17mins

Play

Rank #2: Wrongful Dismissal & Breach of Confidentiality: Episode 46

Podcast cover
Read more
Mr M Farnan v Sunderland Association Football Club
A claim for wrongful dismissal in the High Court

In this episode of the Podcast I bring you the detail and Judgement from a claim brought by a former employee of Sunderland FC which emphasises the need to have good provisions and policies for confidentiality in your employment contracts and Handbooks.

In this episode I will cover:
  • What the facts were leading to Mr Farnan's claim
  • Why Mr Farnan alleged that Sunderland FC were in breach of contract
  • What the High Court Judge considered to be serious breaches of confidentiality
  • What the High Court Judge considered in respect of an allegation that Mr Farnan had sent an offensive Christmas Card from his work email address
  • What you need to do to ensure you are covered in the event you take action against an employee in similar circumstances
  • How to protect your  confidential information
 Action Points

Review your contracts and handbooks to ensure that you have specific clauses regarding your expectations of confidentiality. If you want to prevent employees from sending emails to their personal emails and from 'banking' confidential information then you need to include an express provision to this effect.

Helpful Links

Full case report Farnan v Sunderland Association Football Club

 HR Harbour

Employment Law & HR Update Event

14th January 2016 at The Point, Eastleigh.

5pm for 5:30pm start

£4.90 per ticket

Get your ticket today as they are limited.

Jan 11 2016

28mins

Play

Rank #3: Race Discrimination & Harassment Case: Episode 49

Podcast cover
Read more
Is an instruction to only speak English at work discrimination?

A recent discrimination case has been decided by the Employment Appeal Tribunal concerning an instruction to a Russian employee not to speak Russian at work, an interesting case for various reasons.

In this episode I will cover:
  • What the relevant legal provisions are regarding direct discrimination and harassment
  • What is required to bring a claim for direct discrimination
  • What is required for behaviour to constitute harassment
  • Reasons you should proceed with caution with regards to employees who have been employed for less than 2 years
  • Steps you can take to prevent a claim
 Action Points

Ensure that your managers and supervisors have some training and/or knowledge of the requirements of the Equality Act and that they understand that instructions they give to employees can lead to an employment tribunal claim.

Helpful Links

Kelly v Covance Laboratories Limited

UK Business Startup Podcast

 HR Harbour

 Sign up for my fortnightly newsletter (next newsletter 29th February 2016)

www.adviceforemployers.co.uk 

Feb 22 2016

19mins

Play

Rank #4: Everything you need to know when suspending employees: Episode 85

Podcast cover
Read more
Suspension Checklist

We are contacted on an almost daily basis by employees who have been suspended from work and often it is as a result of poor communication or poor planning and consideration. Many employers believe that suspending an employee is a neutral act and there is no risk in suspending whilst disciplinary issues are investigated, however several cases have shown that this is not the case and employers need to take care when suspending employees. Most recently I reported a case where it was ruled that it was unlawful for the employer to suspend the employee. You can read the full details here: CLICK HERE

In this episode I will cover:
  • A checklist for you to go through before suspending employees;
  • Guidance on what you should tell the employee when you suspend;
  • Why it is important to take care when suspending.
Action Points

1. Get in touch to get your copy of the free suspension checklist, email suspension@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk

Don't forget you can contact us by email alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or miranda@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or by telephone 01983 897003, 01722 653001 or 023 8098 2006

Sep 19 2017

20mins

Play

Rank #5: Why dealing with conduct issues now can save you time (& stress) later

Podcast cover
Read more
It is easy to let things slide & have an easier life, BUT it can be costly later on 

In this weeks' episode I explain the importance of addressing issues and having those difficult conversations when they occur rather than letting it go and trying to deal with it later on. In the last few months I have been advising a few employers who for one reason or another have reached the end of the line with an employee because of a culmination of small issues. However, because these small conduct issues have not been addressed when they arose it is almost impossible to rely on them later.

In this episode I will cover:
  • The importance of dealing with conduct issues as they arise, regardless of how uncomfortable or time consuming it may be;
  • Why it is difficult to rely on historic conduct issues to dismiss an employee;
  • The importance of setting out your rules and requirements of employees in a Handbook or set of rules;
  • Why it is important for employees to have been told the rules and requirements you have of them;
  • How to implement new rules and standards of conduct for existing staff;
  • Why it is important to tailor your documents, contracts and handbook to your business.
Action Points
  1. Review your Handbook and/or rules to ensure they cover the points that are important to your business;
  2. Make sure staff are aware of the Handbook and/or rules and seek evidence to confirm this;
  3. Consider an annual requirement for all staff to confirm they are aware of the rules and procedures;
  4. Deal with minor issues of misconduct when they arise and make a note of your conversation on the employee's personnel file;
  5. Seek advice and assistance if you are unsure of what to do with a disciplinary or dismissal issue;
  6. I can help with all of the points above so why not give me a call and let an expert take care of it for you 023 8098 2006 or 01983 897003.
 Useful Links & Case References

Episode 26 of the Podcast - Reasonableness of a decision to dismiss

Episodes 34 - 39 - Unfair Dismissal Focus

Episode 36 - the Reasonableness Test

Mar 20 2017

20mins

Play

Rank #6: Family Rights at Work: Episode 3 Maternity & Adoption Leave & Pay Additional Considerations

Podcast cover
Read more
Employee Rights: Some Additional Considerations

This is a mini series focusing on family rights at work and the considerations which apply with regards to employees who are parents/will be parents. In this third episode in the series I round off with some final information employers will need to know with regards to employees who take maternity or adoption leave.

In this episode I will cover:
  • What you need to consider and be aware of with regards to redundancy.
  • Why you must offer a suitable alternative vacancy to an employee on maternity or adoption leave first.
  • What happens to an employee's holiday entitlement when they are on maternity or adoption leave.
  • Why it is important to include details about holiday in a contract or policy.
  • The additional protection from detriment that employees have when taking maternity or adoption leave.
  • The additional protection from dismissal because of exercising or intending to exercise the right to take maternity or adoption leave.
  • Recovery of statutory maternity and adoption pay via HMRC.
Action Points
  1. Ensure you include the details of any holiday requirements for employees taking or about to take adoption or maternity leave in your contracts or holiday policy;
  2. Ensure your managers and staff understand that employees have protection from detrimental treatment because they are taking maternity or adoption leave;
  3. Seek advice if you have an unusual situation or you are not sure what to do. You can contact me by email alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or phone 023 8098 2006 or 01983 897003 if you would like to discuss.
   The Guardian Article

The Employment Law & HR Podcast was recently featured in an article on the Guardian online. You can read the full article here

Featured in:

Dec 11 2016

13mins

Play

Rank #7: Employee Grievances: Part 1 An introduction

Podcast cover
Read more

This episode of the podcast is the first in a mini series focusing on Grievances and how to deal with them.

There will be at least a further 3 episodes on this topic finishing with an episode on Frequently Asked Questions so if you have a question that you would like covered please email me alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or leave a comment below.

In this episode I will cover:
  • Why it is important to identify a grievance even when it may not be obvious!
  • The importance of handling grievances well.
  • The impact and potential legal consequences of failing to deal with grievances correctly.
  • The starting point for any employer when considering grievances.
Action Points
  1. Have a good internal grievance procedure;
  2. Ensure that managers and HR personnel are aware of how to spot and deal with grievances.
  3. Seek advice and expert support at the earliest opportunity if a dispute arises.  
Useful Links

ACAS Code of Practice Here

ACAS Guidance Here

As part of our HR Harbour annual subscription service for employers we provide guidance and support with grievances and produce a grievance procedure for our clients. If you would like to know more about the HR Harbour Service and how you can get unlimited support from as little as £180 per month please contact me for a no obligation discussion - alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or you can find full details here: HR Harbour

Don't forget you can contact us by email alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or miranda@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or by telephone 01983 897003, 01722 653001 or 023 8098 2006

Apr 16 2018

16mins

Play

Rank #8: When is additional pay a reasonable adjustment for a disabled employee?: Episode 62

Podcast cover
Read more

In this weeks' episode I bring you the details of a case which has recently been decided by the Employment Appeal Tribunal regarding the requirement to make a reasonable adjustment for an employee who is disabled and who took a different job role, as a reasonable adjustment, which would normally have 10% less pay. Case name G4S Cash Solutions (UK) Limited v Powell

In this episode I will cover:
  • The facts of the case and why the employee was arguing for more pay;
  • The background to the requirement to make reasonable adjustments for a disabled employee;
  • Why it is important to consider what is 'reasonable' in the particular circumstances;
  • Why full sick pay is not a reasonable adjustment;
  • Why the Employment Appeal Tribunal decided it would be reasonable for the employer in this case to continue to pay at the employees previous rate of pay;
  • Why you should take care in deciding what reasonable adjustments should be made for a disabled employee.
Resources

You can read the full judgement for the case here

You can find lots of examples of reasonable adjustments on the Equality & Human Rights Commission Website here

Action Points
  1. If you have a disabled employee or someone you suspect could be disabled you need to consider if any adjustments are needed;
  2. Seek advice if you are not sure about whether they would be a disabled person for the purposes of the Equality Act;
  3. Seek advice about specific adjustments for the circumstances;
  4. Give me a call if you want to talk through 023 8098 2006 or 01983 897003
 Remember getting advice from a Solicitor need not be expensive or difficult!

Sep 05 2016

19mins

Play

Rank #9: Can you start a disciplinary procedure for an issue that has already been dealt with? Can you bring up historic misconduct? - Episode 110

Podcast cover
Read more
What are your options with disciplinary action & double jeopardy

In this episode of the podcast I cover a listener question, which asks, how far back can you go with a disciplinary issue? and can you resurrect an issue that a previous manager dealt with informally but you now feel should have been dealt with as a formal disciplinary issue? 

In this episode I will cover:
  • The risks if you dismiss an employee for an issue that has previously been dealt with informally.
  • A case where employees were 'tried' twice for the same issue by their employer and found to have been fairly dismissed.
  • A case where an employee was given a warning to start with and then subsequently dismissed and it was found to be unfair.
  • The test of reasonableness and why it is relevant to disciplinary decisions.
  • Why the manager's behaviour in this scenario could be seen as bullying.
  • What you should consider if you are in similar circumstances.
  • Double jeopardy or res judicata in respect of employment issues.
Action Points
  1. Ensure that you and any managers, supervisors and decision makers in your business are trained on your standards of conduct and understand how to handle conduct issues correctly the first time;
  2. Review your disciplinary procedure and rules and ensure that you have a good and easy to follow process in place;
  3. Seek advice if you are unsure about the situation.

We offer training in respect of the correct ways to handle disciplinary processes and we can also review and advise on your procedures for you so please do get in touch if we can be of any assistance.

Useful Links

Sarkar v West London Mental Health NHS Trust 2010

Christou and another v London Borough of Haringey 2013

Williams v Leeds United Football Club

Episode 108  of the Podcast

Please do leave any comments or observations you have on this case below. Please ensure that any comments are respectful to all views and opinions.

If you would like to know more about the HR Harbour Service and how you can get unlimited support from as little as £180 per month please contact me for a no obligation discussion - alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or you can find full details here: HR Harbour

Don't forget you can contact us by email alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or miranda@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or by telephone 01983 897003, 01722 653001 or 023 8098 2006

Big thanks to Leslies Motors who have loaned us a new Kia Ceed to trial for the month - www.lesliesmotors.co.uk

Oct 30 2018

24mins

Play

Rank #10: What do employers need to know about snow & travel disruption?

Podcast cover
Read more
Snow and travel disruption at work

Following the snow across much of the UK last week the issue of snow and disruption at work and the inevitable questions about employers obligations has arisen. So in this episode of the podcast I cover what you should do if employees cannot attend at work because of snow.  

In this episode I will cover the following:
  • Steps you should take to prepare your business for adverse weather.
  • Minimum temperatures at work.
  • What employee rights are if schools are closed or there is disruption to childcare.
  • Why it is important to have a policy in place to deal with snow days.
  • Things to consider and options to avoid an employee losing out on pay.
  • When unlawful deductions from wages may apply.
  • Why it is important to get advice.
  • Health and safety considerations

We can help with the relevant procedure and clause for your employment contracts to deal with snow and travel disruption. Please do not hesitate to get in touch for some real life help for your organisation.

Useful Links

Snow days article

If you would like to know more about the HR Harbour Service and how you can get unlimited support from as little as £180 per month please contact me for a no obligation discussion - alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or you can find full details here: HR Harbour

Don't forget you can contact us by email alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or miranda@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or by telephone 01983 897003, 01722 653001 or 023 8098 2006

Feb 04 2019

15mins

Play

Rank #11: Family Rights at Work: Episode 1 Pregnancy

Podcast cover
Read more
Employers Obligations: Pregnancy Notification

In this weeks' episode I bring you the first episode in a mini series focusing on family rights at work and the considerations which apply with regards to employees who are parents/will be parents.

In this episode I will cover:
  • When an employee is legally obliged to inform you they are pregnant.
  • The notification process and information an employee must provide.
  • Guidance on how to handle the situation the right way when an employee tells you they are pregnant.
  • When to carry out a Health & Safety Risk Assessment.
  • What to tell an employee who is pregnant.
  • An employees right to time off for antenatal appointments.
  • A 'Qualifying' employees right to time off to accompany a pregnant lady to an antenatal appointment
  • Additional protection & rights for pregnant employees.
Action Points
  1. Check your staff handbook or policies to ensure it includes a pregnancy and maternity leave policy;
  2. Ensure your general risk assessment includes an assessment of risk and mitigation of risks for pregnant employees generally;
  3. Ensure that your general health and safety risk assessment is up to date;
  4. Seek advice before refusing time off for antenatal appointments you can contact me by email alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or phone 023 8098 2006 or 01983 897003 if you would like to discuss.
   The Guardian Article

The Employment Law & HR Podcast was recently featured in an article on the Guardian online. You can read the full article here

Featured in:

 Getting advice from a Solicitor does not need to be expensive or painful!

Nov 14 2016

22mins

Play

Rank #12: Gender equality in the workplace

Podcast cover
Read more
A reflection on Gender Equality in the lead up to International Women's Day 2019

In this episode of the podcast I reflect on some of the issues facing women in the workplace including the challenges and statistics of the number of women who are leading the way in FTSE companies. 

In this episode I will cover:
  • Why inequality is part of our recent history and some of the issues women have overcome at work in only the last 100 years.
  • Recent statistics on the numbers of women leading FTSE 100 and FTSE 350 companies.
  • Some of the most shocking reasons why women are not making it onto the Boards of these 'leading' companies.
  • Why having a gender balance is actually good for business.
  • Some top tips on how you can start to address the imbalance in your business or organisation.
  • The Equality Act provisions on positive action and when it is permitted.
Action Points
  1. Track and measure so that you understand statistics on gender equality in your business or organisation.
  2. Tailor and target your recruitment marketing for women.
  3. Set up mentoring and ensure that the female leaders in your business or organisation are visible to others.
  4. Address and explore unconscious bias and preconceived ideas that may have developed at a senior level.
  5. Develop a strategy for what you want to achieve and get buy in to this at all levels.
  6. Ensure that all managers and senior staff have training in respect of equality and diversity.
  7. Look at the culture in your business and make changes where the culture does not reflect your strategy.
  8. Address complaints and issues quickly and take them seriously.
  9. Be proactive and build confidence of staff who have ambition or talent to be a future leader.
  10. Introduce a clear salary structure based on tangible measure.

We offer training on Equality and Diversity for staff and we can review your contracts, procedures and Handbooks for you so please do get in touch if we can be of any assistance.

Useful Links

Article written by Alison Colley 'Gender Equality in the Workplace: Still and Issue?' November 2018

Worst explanations for not appointing women to Boards

Equality Act Section 158 and 159

Mar 04 2019

25mins

Play

Rank #13: Will an employee's refusal to accept an alternative role in a restructure situation mean that they forego a redundancy payment?

Podcast cover
Read more
Restructure and redundancy: When do you have to pay redundancy pay if there is alternative employment available?

In this episode of the podcast I cover a question from a listener which follows on nicely from the last episode when I answered a question about changing employee hours and redundancy. In this episode I tackle the difficult issue for employers regarding suitable alternative employment and the impact of an employees refusal on their right to redundancy pay. 

In this episode I will cover:
  • The legal position in the Employment Rights Act about redundancy payments.
  • What an employer should consider when deciding if a role is a 'suitable alternative' or not.
  • How an employer should make an offer of alternative employment and what to include.
  • The circumstances in which an employee can generally refuse an offer and when that refusal will be reasonable.
  • Practical steps for employers to take when considering alternative employment.
  • How to try to resolve potentially difficult issues with employees.
Action Points
  1. If you are restructuring and there are alternative roles consider carefully how you are going to match employees with the new roles.
  2. Analyse the differences in the roles between old and new and try to consider how it will be perceived from the employee's perspective.
  3. Discuss any objections with the employee and see if you can reach an agreement.
  4. Seek advice if you are unsure whether you are required to make a redundancy payment or not.
Useful Links

Devon Primary Care Trust v Readman - Court of Appeal

Claim for redundancy pay or other payments where the employer is insolvent

Redundancy Mini-Series

Please do leave any comments, ideas and best practice below. Please ensure that any comments are respectful to all views and opinions.

As part of our HR Harbour annual subscription service for employers we provide guidance and training for employers, supervisors and managers. If you would like to know more about the HR Harbour Service and how you can get unlimited support from as little as £180 per month please contact me for a no obligation discussion - alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or you can find full details here: HR Harbour

Don't forget you can contact us by telephone 01983 897003, 01722 653001 or 023 8098 2006

May 28 2019

25mins

Play

Rank #14: What can a manager do when an employee has raised a grievance about them? Episode 94

Podcast cover
Read more
What can a manager do to assert their authority and continue to manage an employee who has a grievance against them? 

In this episode of the podcast I attempt to answer a great question from a listener about the practicalities of managing someone who has raised a grievance against you in response to your addressing performance or capability issues. An interesting question and a scenario that arises all too frequently.

In this episode I will cover:
  • My advice on how to avoid a grievance scenario in the first place;
  • Why employees often feel aggrieved when performance or capability issues are raised;
  • Why communication is the key in managing employees;
  • My thoughts on grievance procedures and why they do not need to be long drawn out processes;
  • Tips on how best to continue to proactively manage an employee even when there is a grievance process.
Action Points
  1. Do not avoid difficult conversations with employees. If there is an issue to discuss you need to do so immediately and without delay;
  2. Ensure that managers and supervisors who have line management responsibilities have some form of management training;
  3. Give your managers and supervisors support with difficult employees and play a hands on role to resolve the issues;
  4. Do not drag on grievance processes unnecessarily, there is no reason why it has to take months to investigate;
  5. Seek advice and expert support before a dispute arises. 
Useful Links

As part of our HR Harbour annual subscription service for employers we provide guidance and support for managers, which can include training on being a better manager and having difficult conversations. If you would like to know more about the HR Harbour Service and how you can get unlimited support from as little as £150 per month please contact me for a no obligation discussion - alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or you can find full details here: HR Harbour

Don't forget you can contact us by email alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or miranda@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or by telephone 01983 897003, 01722 653001 or 023 8098 2006

Mar 05 2018

22mins

Play

Rank #15: Employee Grievances: Part 2 Investigation

Podcast cover
Read more
Employee Grievances: Part 2 Investigation

This episode of the podcast is the second in a mini series focusing on Grievances and how to deal with them.

There will be at least a further 2 episodes on this topic finishing with an episode on Frequently Asked Questions so if you have a question that you would like covered please email me alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or leave a comment below.

In this episode I will cover:
  • How to approach the grievance process.
  • Things to consider when assigning a grievance investigator.
  • The importance of planning and setting out the scope and purpose of the investigation.
  • The principles of reasonableness, objectivity and fairness of the investigation.
  • The importance of confidentiality and why it is tricky to manage.
  • How to plan and prepare for meetings with employees and witnesses.
  • Why evidence gathering is essential in assisting you reach the right outcome.
  • How to shape the investigation report and resources available to help.
Action Points
  1. When you receive a grievance from an employee act quickly and assign an investigator.
  2. Ensure that the investigator has appropriate training or resources at hand to assist with the investigation.
  3. Seek advice and expert support at the earliest opportunity if a dispute arises.  
Useful Links

ACAS Code of Practice Here

ACAS Guidance Here

ACAS Guidance on conducting workplace investigations Here

As part of our HR Harbour annual subscription service for employers we provide guidance and support with grievances and produce a grievance procedure for our clients. If you would like to know more about the HR Harbour Service and how you can get unlimited support from as little as £180 per month please contact me for a no obligation discussion - alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or you can find full details here: HR Harbour

Don't forget you can contact us by email alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or miranda@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or by telephone 01983 897003, 01722 653001 or 023 8098 2006

Apr 30 2018

21mins

Play

Rank #16: Employment Cases in the News August/September 2017: Episode 84

Podcast cover
Read more
Employment Law & HR issues in the news

Normally when I talk about a case on the podcast it is because it has importance from a legal perspective, usually it has been reported in legal journals and websites and the main issue covered is the point of law. This week there have been three employment issues in the popular press which I thought you may be interested to hear about.

They do not bring anything 'new' from a legal perspective but the facts are interesting and they provide good examples for employers on how not to deal with issues that arise.

In this episode I will cover:
  • A first for McDonald's staff who have taken the decision to strike at two restaurants in the UK;
  • Two male police officers who between them have been awarded £96,000 compensation for victimisation;
  • A Royal Mail worker who successfully claimed constructive dismissal when his hours were changed without his agreement.
Action Points

1. Ensure that your staff and managers have training about equality and diversity issues;

2. Take care when changing employee hours particularly if it impacts on their childcare or caring responsibilities;

3. Seek advice when you receive a flexible working application before making the decision;

4. Continue to treat your employees reasonably and within the law and you will have much less chance of a dispute arising;

5. Seek advice about employment law and HR best practice from a professional who is experienced in this area of law.

Don't forget you can contact us by email alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or miranda@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or by telephone 01983 897003, 01722 653001 or 023 8098 2006

Sep 05 2017

19mins

Play

Rank #17: When does an employer have constructive knowledge of disability? Episode 93

Podcast cover
Read more
Will an employer be expected to know an employee is disabled if the occupational health report says otherwise? 

In this episode of the podcast I cover a case from the Court of Appeal which has dealt with this question and the broader issue of an employer's constructive knowledge of disability and when this triggers the requirement to make reasonable adjustments.

The case is Donelien v Liberata UK Limited

In this episode I will cover:
  • The facts of the case;
  • Background to the relevant discrimination legislation;
  • The relevance of the case given the fact that it was decided under the Disability Discrimination Act;
  • The decision of the Court of Appeal;
  • Why it is important for employers to obtain as much information as they can about an employees condition before making decisions about reasonable adjustments and/or dismissal.
Action Points
  1. If you suspect an employee may be disabled it is important to get advice;
  2. Whilst occupational health reports are helpful caution should be taken when relying on their content alone;
  3. Seek advice on your legal obligations before dispute arise. 
Useful Links

Donelien v Liberata UK Limited - Court of Appeal 

Don't forget you can contact us by email alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or miranda@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or by telephone 01983 897003, 01722 653001 or 023 8098 2006

Feb 19 2018

16mins

Play

Rank #18: Uber drivers claim to be employees: Episode 61

Podcast cover
Read more
The Employment Tribunal hears a case by Uber drivers claiming to be employees

In this weeks' episode I bring you the details of a case that has just been heard by the Central London Employment Tribunal involving Uber drivers and their claim to be employees. If they are successful it will mean they and thousands of other drivers will be entitled to a number of employment benefits. It could also have wider implications for businesses who utilise staff services in a similar way. The Employment Tribunal have not issued their judgement yet and I will report on this again when the outcome is known.

In this episode I will cover:
  • Details that are known about the case;
  • Why it is important for the Uber drivers to be employees rather than self-employed persons;
  • What factors the Tribunal will consider when deciding if someone is an employee, worker or self-employed person;
  • What the top three factors are in deciding if someone is an employee;
  • Why more businesses are starting to use 'self-employed' contracts;
  • Why you should take care when deciding what 'label' to place on your relationship with staff.
Action Points
  1. If you have 'self-employed' persons or consultants working for you, review the situation to ensure it is still a self-employed relationship;
  2. Seek advice if you are not sure about the legal status of the relationship;
  3. Sign up for my newsletter at www.adviceforemployers.co.uk to ensure you get an update when the outcome is released;
  4. Give me a call if you want to talk through 023 8098 2006 or 01983 897003

Aug 08 2016

18mins

Play

Rank #19: Supreme Court Ruling on Employment Tribunal Fees: Episode 83

Podcast cover
Read more
No more fees in the Employment Tribunal

Undoubtedly you will have heard in the news or online about the Supreme Court decision that the introduction of Employment Tribunal fees for employees to make a claim is unlawful and as a result effective immediately employees will not have to pay the £160 or £250 fee for making a claim. In this episode of the Podcast I bring you a summary of the decision and my views on the outcome and the future for the Employment Tribunal.

In this episode I will cover:
  • Background into the introduction of fees and reason for them;
  • The impact of fees on employees and the number of claims;
  • Why Unison challenged the introduction of fees;
  • Summary of the Supreme Court reasons for the decision;
  • What is currently happening with employment tribunal claims;
  • What may happen next.
Action Points

1. Don't panic about the 'floodgates' being opened and a flurry of claims against your business;

2. Ensure that you stay informed of the latest developments, you can sign up below for our free newsletter;

3. Continue to treat your employees reasonably and within the law and you will have much less chance of a dispute arising;

4. Seek advice about employment law and HR best practice from a professional who is experienced in this area of law.

 

Useful Links & Case References Update article on this subject - Read here   You can read the full judgement here: Read here 

Aug 07 2017

19mins

Play

Rank #20: What can you do if you find out an employee has a criminal conviction? Episode 105

Podcast cover
Read more

What can you do about undeclared convictions of existing employees?

In this episode of the podcast I answer a question from a podcast listener with regards to criminal convictions and what you can do if you find an employee has a conviction you did not know about, which, whilst it does not impact on their job role, could cause reputational damage.

In this episode I will cover:

  • The different rules that apply between Spent and Unspent Convictions.
  • When some job roles are exempt from the Spent conviction rules.
  • What you need to consider and the risks of dismissing an employee?
  • Circumstances in which you may decide to dismiss or refuse employment to someone because of a conviction.
  • Considerations if you do employ someone with a previous conviction.

Action Points

  1. Consider if any of the job roles in your business fall under the Exceptions Order
  2. Look at how the vetting process works and fits in your organisation.
  3. Consider what steps you take to undertake checks and background information about candidates.
  4. If you are unsure how this decision affects your business, please give us a call – 01983 897003 – 023 8098 2006 – 01722 653001

Useful Links

 Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 – Guidance 

As part of our HR Harbour annual subscription service for employers we provide guidance and support with settlement discussions and documentation. If you would like to know more about the HR Harbour Service and how you can get unlimited support from as little as £180 per month please contact me for a no obligation discussion - alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or you can find full details here: HR Harbour

Don't forget you can contact us by email alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or miranda@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or by telephone 01983 897003, 01722 653001 or 023 8098 2006

Aug 05 2018

21mins

Play