September 21, 2023

Epic Law

The Law Folks

UK Employment Law

Employment and labor laws in the United Kingdom have undergone radical changes in the past two decades. These changes were necessitated by several macro trends such as increasing influx of immigrant labor, need for regulatory compliance with directives issued by the European Union, and radical shift in labor unions’ acceptability of labor court rulings on matters related to labor grievances.

UK Employment Laws that govern compensation of employed personnel include National Minimum Wage Act, ratified by the parliament in 1998 and the National Minimum Wage Regulations Act. These employment acts are updated on an annual basis and specify the minimum wage for all labor classes under an employment contract. The employment contract between a worker and his employer need not be a formal document; oral employment contracts and implied employment contracts also come under the ambit of these legislations.

The proposed minimum wage rate was close to 6 British pounds per hour in 2008. Whether a is paid on a monthly, weekly, daily, hourly, or session basis does not have any bearing on the applicability of minimum wage laws. However, independent company directors, apprentices, and volunteers are not guaranteed any minimum wage.

UK Employment Law also specify the maximum number of hours, a worker is obligated to work. Currently, this figure is 48 hours in a week. However, workers can choose to work more than 48 hours in a week, if they choose to do so out of their own volition. No employer can forcibly make a worker work more than the specified 48 hours per week. UK Employment Law bestows all workers, a statutory right to a minimum of 5.6 weeks of paid leaves in a calendar year. Even part-time employees are entitled to receive the same number of paid leaves. Additionally, all workers have the right to at least one day off each week. They also have a legal right to an in-break rest break if they work for more than 6 hours in a day.

Workers who work in night shifts have to right to demand free health assessments, paid for by the employer. UK Employment Law carries a provision allowing companies to lay-off workers in case there is closure of business completely or specifically at the employee’s work site. Redundancy is also allowed if the employer can prove that there is a declining need for workers engaged in a specific trade. Workers have the right to demand a redundancy payment if they have served continuously for at least 24 months. The redundancy payment is not taxable.