There will be a number of important employment law developments in 2019.
EU Settlement Scheme
The scheme will open fully by 30th March 2019. The test phase of the scheme is open now. The deadline for applying will be 30 June 2021, or 31 December 2020 if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.
EU citizens and their families can apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to continue living in the UK. Settled or pre-settled status will be awarded if the application is successful to be able to live and work in the UK.
The Prime Minister announced that there will be no fee when the scheme opens fully on 30th March 2019
Information can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families
Changes to Employer’s Right to Work Checks
The following applies to right to work checks conducted on or after 28th January 2019
1. The introduction of online right to work checks
2. An amendment to the acceptable document list to remove the requirement that a British birth certificate must be the full (long) certificate. A short or a long UK birth certificate are now acceptable documents to demonstrate a right to work in combination with an appropriately documented national insurance number.
Information can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/right-to-work-checks-employers-guide
Increase in National Living and Minimum Wage
From the 1st April the new rates will be as follows:
• Apprentice rate: Increase from £3.70 to £3.90 per hour
• Age 25 and over: National Living wage increase from £7.83 to £8.21 per hour
• Age 21 to 24 (inclusive): Increase from £7.38 to £7.70 per hour
• Age 18 to 20 (inclusive): Increase from £5.90 to £6.15 per hour
• Age 16 or 17 (inclusive): Increase from £4.20 to £4.35 per hour
Changes to Workplace Pension rates
From the 1st April the minimum contribution rates will increase to 3% for employers and 5% for employees.
Itemised Pay Slips
From 6th April the right to receive a written itemised payslip will apply to workers as well as employees. The payslips of workers and employees paid by the hour must clearly set out the number of hours for which they have been paid.
All payslips must include:
1. The gross amount of the wages or salary
2. Net amount of wages or salary payable
3. Amounts of any variable or fixed deductions, and the purposes for which they are made
4. Total number of variable hours worked (when workers and employees get a different wage depending on the hours they have worked).
Increases to the Statutory Rates for Maternity, Paternity, Shared Parental Pay, Adoption and Sick Pay
On the 6th April the rate of statutory sick pay is increasing from £92.05 to £94.25
To be entitled to these statutory payments, the employee’s average earnings must be equal to or more than the lower earnings limit. The lower earnings limit is increasing from £116 to £118 per week
On the 7th April the following statutory payments will change:
The rate of statutory maternity pay is rising to £148.68 or 90% of the employee’s average weekly earnings if this figure is less than the statutory rate.
Statutory paternity pay and statutory shared parental pay will increase to £148.68 or 90% of the employee’s average weekly earnings if this figure is less than the statutory rate.
The rate of statutory adoption pay will increase to £148.68, statutory adoption pay is payable at 90% of the employee’s average weekly earnings for the first six weeks, with the remainder of the adoption pay period at the rate of £148.68, or 90% of average weekly earnings if this is less than £148.68.
In April Employers can transfer up to 25% of their annual apprenticeship levy funds to support apprentices in their supply chain including using an Apprenticeship Training Agency (ATA)