The Employment Law & HR Podcast

Answers to some questions you may have about the GDPR 

Following on from the last two podcast episodes (89 and 90) I round off this mini series on the GDPR and provide you some of the questions that have arisen in discussion and from my own enquiries for my business.

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into force in the UK and across the EU on the 25th May 2018 and is the first major overhaul of Data Protection rules and regulations since the Data Protection Act 1995.

The GDPR is important for businesses who hold any type of data, whether about customers, contacts or employees, and the fines for getting it wrong can becostly. In this podcast I bring you questions and answers to some questions you may have.

In this episode I will cover answers to the following questions:

  • Does the GDPR apply to information held about a business?
  • Are there extra considerations if we employ children?
  • Do all businesses need a data protection officer?
  • Who needs to know about the GDPR in my business?
  • Do I need to delete all old employee information I have?
  • If I only keep paper records does the GDPR still apply?
  • If we use software to hold employee data what do we need to do about this?
  • Is it necessary to have consent in all cases if we are holding and processing data?

Action Points

  1. Listen to the podcast and follow the action points;
  2. Contact us for a free copy of the action points and checklist - email GDPR@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk
  3. Sign up for updates and alerts from the information commissioner;
  4. Diarise time to take action on the GDPR;
  5. Consider assigning a Data Protection Office or champion in your organisation. 

Useful Links

Information Commissioner Guidance: https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-reform/overview-of-the-gdpr/

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

 
Direct download: Episode_91_Final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:58am EST

As an employer what actions should you be taking to comply with the GDPR 

Following on from the last podcast (episode 89) I continue to provide you with an overview of the 'GDPR' and what you will need to know as an employer.

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into force in the UK and across the EU on the 25th May 2018 and is the first major overhaul of Data Protection rules and regulations since the Data Protection Act 1995.

The GDPR is important for businesses who hold any type of data, whether about customers, contacts or employees, and the fines for getting it wrong can be very costly. In this podcast I bring you an action list to get started on ensuring your business is compliant with the GDPR from an employers perspective.

In this episode I will cover:

  • Consent issues for employers;
  • Actions you should take and why;
  • Ways in which you can simplify your compliance with the GDPR.

Action Points

  1. Listen to the podcast and follow the action points;
  2. Contact us for a free copy of the action points and checklist - email GDPR@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk
  3. Sign up for updates and alerts from the information commissioner;
  4. Diarise time to take action on the GDPR;
  5. Consider assigning a Data Protection Office or champion in your organisation. 

Useful Links

Information Commissioner Guidance: https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-reform/overview-of-the-gdpr/

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

 
Direct download: Episode_90.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:06am EST

Do you know about the GDPR & your requirements as an employer? 

If you are an employer or business owner you will have undoubtedly heard the word 'GDPR' around generally, normally followed by a bit of confusion and concern. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into force in the UK and across the EU on the 25th May 2018 and is the first major overhaul of Data Protection rules and regulations since the Data Protection Act 1995.

The GDPR is important for businesses who hold any type of data, whether about customers, contacts or employees, and the fines for getting it wrong can be very costly. In this podcast I begin a mini-series bringing you an overview of the GDPR from an employers perspective. Following this podcast will be at least one, possibly two further episodes on the GDPR and a free checklist for Employers.

In this episode I will cover:

  • An overview of the introduction of the GDPR;
  • The deadline for compliance;
  • The consequences of non compliance;
  • A background to its application in the UK and EU;
  • What data it applies to;
  • How you may legally justify holding and processing data;
  • How you can gain consent from employees to holding their data;
  • What information you must provide to employees about their data and data rights;
  • What an employee's rights are when it comes to their personal data;
  • Changes to the Subject Access process and rules;
  • How you must demonstrate your compliance with the GDPR;
  • Advice about appointing a data protection officer;
  • Obligations to report a data breach;
  • Where you can go for more information.

Action Points

  1. Listen to the podcast and future episodes about the GDPR;
  2. Contact us for a free checklist (available after the 20th November 2017);
  3. Sign up for updates and alerts from the information commissioner;
  4. Diarise time to take action on the GDPR;
  5. Consider assigning a Data Protection Office or champion in your organisation. 

Useful Links

Information Commissioner Guidance: https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-reform/overview-of-the-gdpr/

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

Direct download: Episode_89_Final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:11pm EST

What is Sexual Harassment? & How does the law protect people in the UK?

Following recent news about the long running and high profile allegations of sexual harassment against Harvey Weinstein in the US there has been a lot of coverage in the media about sexual harassment and harassment in the workplace. With this coverage has been the social media campaign #metoo where women who have been subject to some form of harassment are using the hashtag in their social media to highlight the issue. I thought that it would be a good time to cover what the law in the UK says about sexual harassment and to provide an update for employers to help understand responsibilities and how to  ensure the culture in your workplace does not allow this kind of behaviour to take place.

In this episode I will cover:

  • The law in the UK regarding sexual harassment;
  • The legal test for establishing sexual harassment;
  • Some case examples of what constitutes sexual harassment at work;
  • Some tips and hints to prevent issues arising;
  • How to ensure that this culture does not develop in your organisation.

Action Points

  1. Act quickly if faced with allegations or suspicions of such behaviour;
  2. Be clear on the type of behaviour that is acceptable in your organisation;
  3. Have a clear policy on acceptable behaviour and methods or reporting;
  4. Deal with any allegations or issues seriously.

Useful Links

BBC 5 Live survey Results & Report: Here

Equality Act 2010

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

Direct download: Episode_88_Final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:53pm EST

Examples of cases involving suspension at work

Following the last two episodes in which I covered suspending employees, I have compiled some cases involving suspension at work to give you some examples of the facts and circumstances.

In this episode I will cover:

You can review Employment Tribunal Judgement that have been published here: https://www.gov.uk/employment-tribunal-decisions

Action Points

  1. Seek advice about the particular circumstances, every case is different;
  2. Review the suspension checklist before suspending, in the same way as you would for any other conduct issue;
  3. Take care not to make snap decisions or judgments;
  4. Listen to the two earlier episodes on suspension here 85 and 86.

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

 

Would you like advice about your situation?

Appointments are available on the telephone or via Skype throughout the UK.

Alternatively we offer face to face appointments on the Isle of Wight, Salisbury, Eastleigh, Southampton, Fareham, Portsmouth, Winchester and surrounding areas in Hampshire.

Direct download: Episode_87.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:09pm EST

What are an employers options when an employee is charged with a criminal offence? Should they suspend indefinitely? 

Following the last episode in which I covered suspending employees I have been contacted by a listener who raised some great questions about suspending employees when there are criminal allegations either related to work or behaviour outside of work to take into consideration.

This is certainly an issue that arises fairly frequently and often employers do not know what to do and feel that they have no choice but to suspend the employee on full pay pending the outcome of the criminal case.

In this episode I will cover:

  • The difference in approach depending on the facts of the case;
  • Why it may not be appropriate to suspend and/or dismiss an employee for criminial conduct outside of work;
  • The importance of following a fair and reasonable internal disciplinary procedure;
  • What to do if an employee refuses to answer questions or is advised not to attend an investigation meeting;
  • Circumstances in which you do not have to wait for the employee to attend a disciplinary meeting;
  • General principles for suspension and disciplinary decision making.

Action Points

  1. Seek advice about the particular circumstances, every case is different;
  2. Review the suspension checklist before suspending, in the same way as you would for any other conduct issue;
  3. Take care not to make snap decisions or judgments;
  4. Listen to the unfair dismissal mini series which you can find here: 36 and 37

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

Direct download: Episode_86.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:41pm EST

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

Direct download: Episode_85_-_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:12pm EST

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

Direct download: Podcast_ep_84_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:37pm EST

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 
Direct download: Episode_83.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:41am EST

An interview with Juliette Chan 

Although my focus is on the law and the legal side of employing people I am very interested in and enthusiastic about ways in which my clients can be the best employers and get the most out of their people. After meeting Juliette at a networking group on the Isle of Wight I was really interested to hear about her work and the ways in which this can help employers and employees deal with work related issues. Juliette kindly agreed to be interviewed and I hope you will agree has provided some interesting insights into grief, loss and how it relates to work. 

In this episode we cover:

  • Ways in which employers can help employees who have had a bereavement; 
  • How grief and loss effect employees in the workplace; 
  • Ways to spot when someone needs help;
  • Strategies for dealing with grief and loss. 

Action Points

  1. Give managers some guidance and training on dealing with grief in the workplace;
  2. When undertaking redundancies or major changes in the business be aware of the impact on employees;
  3. Seek advice from an expert to ensure you are doing the best you can for your employees. 

About Juliette Chan 

Juliette is a Grief Recovery Specialist® whose business is Altered Dawn.

Juliette helps with any loss such as bereavement, relationship breakdown, pet loss, loss of trust, job loss, bankruptcy, loss of health, etc.

She teaches the Grief Recovery Method® to help people understand their grief, make peace with it and move forward. This isn’t counselling or therapy – it is a series of step-by-step actions that can be used again and again for any future loss. Juliette runs courses for both groups and individuals. 

Juliette is also qualified to work with parents and professionals who want to help children grieve. 

Useful Links & Case References

Juliette's website - Altered Dawn - www.altereddawn.co.uk

You can connect with Juliette on LinkedIn here – Juliette Chan

Direct download: Juliette_Chan.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:38am EST

The Pitfalls of ACAS Early Conciliation 

In this weeks’ episode I tell you about a case involving an employee who represented himself and mistakenly put the wrong employer on his Early Conciliation application.

In this episode I will cover:

  • The facts of the case;
  • Background to the introduction of ACAS Early Conciliation;
  • How an employees mistaken belief about who his employer was cost him his ability to claim constructive dismissal;
  • Why this kind of mistake is helpful to employers facing a claim.

Action Points

  1. If you receive an employment tribunal claim against you through the post you should seek advice immediately as there may be ways of preventing the case from continuing therefore minimising the costs and risks to you; 
  2. Seek advice from an employment law specialist who knows about the Employment Tribunal process and procedures;
  3. We are specialist employment lawyers and can help with case so why not give us a call and let an expert take care of it for you 023 8098 2006, 01983 897003 or 01722 653001.

 Useful Links & Case References

 

Giny v SNA Transport Limited - Employment Appeal Tribunal 

Direct download: Episode_81.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:24am EST

When a female employee receives full maternity pay should a man on shared parental leave receive the same? 

In this weeks' episode I review the recent decisions regarding the payment of enhanced pay to fathers who take shared parental leave. There are two decisions of the Employment Tribunal, Leicester ET and Leeds ET which have given conflicting outcomes on this issue. Both cases are likely to be appealed but in the meantime it leaves a degree of uncertainty for employers who currently give additional pay to female employees on maternity leave but not fathers on shared parental leave.

In this episode I will cover:

  • The facts of the cases;
  • Background to the introduction of shared parental leave;
  • How discrimination law is relevant to this situation;
  • Tips on what you can do as an employer and considerations when it comes to planning enhancements for employees.

Action Points

  1. If you currently pay enhanced maternity pay but not shared parental pay ensure that you are signed up for my newsletter below for more information when the appeal decision is released;
  2. Consider why you provide enhanced pay to employees and the benefits to your workforce of this;
  3. Seek advice if you are unsure what is best for your business;
  4. 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

Ali v Capita Customer Management Ltd - Employment Tribunal 

Hextall v Chief Constable of Leicestershire Police - Employment Tribunal

Snell v Network Rail - Employment Tribunal 

 

 


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Direct download: episode_80.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:59am EST

An interview with Terri Brookes 

In this weeks' episode I interview Terri Brookes who applied for a job as a trainee solicitor with the Government Legal Service (GLS) and requested a reasonable adjustment as a result of her aspergers. When the GLS refused to make adjustments to their recruitment process Terri made a claim in the Employment Tribunal. After winning her case in the Employment Tribunal the GLS appealed to the Employment Appeal Tribunal and Terri successfully defended her claim.

In this episode I will cover:

  • The facts of the case;
  • The reasons why Terri pursued the case;
  • Helpful guidance on reasonable adjustments that are required and should be considered in the recruitment process;
  • Why you need to treat each person with disabilities individually in the recruitment process;
  • Key points about cases in the Employment Appeal Tribunal.

Action Points

  1. If you are recruiting and you have tests or assessments then consider how these may impact those with disabilities;
  2. Consider how you would provide information and application forms, for example, if you had a candidate with a disability;
  3. Seek advice if you are unsure or you are presented with an unusual situation;
  4. 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

The Government Legal Service v Brooks - Employment Appeal Tribunal

Read the full judgement here

You can read my case summary and comment: click here

You can connect with Terri on Twitter - @TIBrookes 

Direct download: rec_live_tibrookes.equality_for_all_18_May_2017_1.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:23pm EST

Mental Health: An interview with the experts 

Mental Health of employees is a difficult subject for employers to tackle and there are a number of implications of getting it wrong. In this mini series I will be focusing on Mental Health at Work and providing some hints, tips and legal advice for employers. This is the final episode in the series and I interview Ian Smith and Gill Hepburn from the italk Employment Team who are specialists in providing support and guidance to employees having difficulties at work as a result of or related to mental health conditions.

In this episode we will cover:

  • What the italk service is and who they help;
  • Guidance and tips for employers and employees;
  • Why mental health training for managers and supervisors is important;
  • Causes of issues at work;
  • Tips for employees who have mental health conditions;
  • Discussion on why more employees are diagnosed with mental health conditions as a result of work;
  • Why employers should know what their own policies and procedures say about mental health at work;
  • Resources and ideas for employers.

Resources for you

  1. www.italk.org.uk
  2. italk Employment Service
  3. Mindful Employer - www.mindfulemployer.net
  4. Mind - Free resources for Employers 
  5. Find Psychological Therapies near you
  6. Legal and practical help for employers is available from the Real Employment Law Team why not give us a call and let an expert take care of it for you 023 8098 2006 or 01983 897003.
Direct download: Interview_with_Gill_and_Ian_-_Episode_78.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00pm EST

Mental Health: Best Practice for Employers 

Mental Health of employees is a difficult subject for employers to tackle and there are a number of implications of getting it wrong. In this mini series I will be focusing on Mental Health at Work and providing some hints, tips and legal advice for employers. The focus in this episode is best practice and what steps you can take to be a better employer.

In this episode I will cover:

  • Some of the reasons why employers behave badly or handle employees with mental health conditions poorly;
  • Tips for Employers to be better including;
  1. Creating a culture of acceptance and communication;
  2. Encourage communication and openness;
  3. Taking steps to reassure staff and make them feel appreciated;
  4. Consider and make workplace adjustments;
  5. Having good management of absence processes.
  • This episode also includes some ideas for best practice & going the extra mile for your employees.

Action Points

  1. Think about the culture in your organisation, what do your managers, supervisors and staff know about mental health and how do they feel dealing with employees who have a mental health condition;
  2. Consider implementing or making at least one change in your business;
  3. Seek advice and assistance to ensure the best practice in your business;
  4. 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.

 


 

Would you like advice about your situation?

Appointments are available on the telephone or via Skype throughout the UK.

Alternatively we offer face to face appointments on the Isle of Wight, in Eastleigh, Southampton, Salisbury, Fareham, Portsmouth, Winchester and surrounding areas in Hampshire.

Direct download: Episode_77.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:42am EST

 Mental Health & Disability 

Mental Health of employees is a difficult subject for employers to tackle and there are a number of implications of getting it wrong. In this mini series I will be focusing on Mental Health at Work and providing some hints, tips and legal advice for employers. The focus in this episode is the legal implications and requirements of employers.

In this episode I will cover:

  • The definition of disability and how it applies to mental health;
  • The distinction between disability and stress at work or work related stress conditions;
  • Who has the burden of proving disability;
  • The importance of medical advice and opinion;
  • Implied knowledge of disability and when an employer will have implied knowledge;
  • Employer's obligations to a disabled employee;
  • Types of reasonable adjustments for a disabled employee with a mental impairment.

Action Points

  1. Discuss with any employees who display signs of mental health issues or long term health conditions;
  2. Provide support and systems in place for identifying reasonable adjustments for employees;
  3. Encourage employees to disclose medical conditions;
  4. Seek advice and assistance to ensure the best practice in your business;
  5. 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.
Direct download: episode_76.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:27am EST

A focus on Stress at Work

Mental Health of employees is a difficult subject for employers to tackle and there are a number of implications of getting it wrong. In this mini series I will be focusing on Mental Health at Work and providing some hints, tips and legal advice for employers. The focus to start with is on stress at work.

In this episode I will cover:

  • The reasons for growing stress numbers at work;
  • The reasons employees become stressed at work;
  • How reducing and preventing stress can help to prevent depression and anxiety conditions;
  • Why it is important for your business that you understand work stress;
  • How to identify employees who are stressed;
  • What you can do to reduce and manage employee stress.

Action Points

  1. Train your managers and supervisors to spot the signs of stress;
  2. Implement a Stress at Work policy;
  3. Increase communication among staff and managers
  4. Seek advice and assistance to ensure the best practice in your business;
  5. 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.

 

Direct download: Episode_75.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:33am EST

Is a cycle courier a self-employed person or a worker?

This weeks' episode is about one of four cases that are making their way through the London Central Employment Tribunal on the issue of the status of workers. In this case Mr Boxer, who is a cycle courier, has asserted that he is a 'worker' rather than a self-employed person and is therefore entitled to holiday pay, and other benefits.

In this episode I will cover:

  • The facts of the case;
  • Why the Employment Tribunal have decided in Mr Boxer's favour;
  • What the significance of this case is;
  • Why there are several of these cases ongoing at the moment;
  • Why I predict that there will be legislation on this area in the near future to set guidelines to easier establish the status of certain workers in the 'gig' economy.

Action Points

  1. If you have any 'self-employed' contractors or persons working for you seek advice to clarify that they would be classed as 'self-employed' if a dispute arose;
  2. Seek advice and assistance if you are unsure of what to do;
  3. Subscribe for updates to ensure you are aware of the latest legal position as it changes;
  4. 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

Boxer v Excel Group Services Limited - London Central Employment Tribunal

Uber Case - Another self-employed v Worker status case - Episode 66

Employment Status and the Gig Economy

Employed or Self-Employed - Episode 61

Direct download: Episode_74.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:03am EST

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

Direct download: Episode_73.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:15am EST

An update on Social Media considerations for Employers

In this weeks' episode I bring you an update on social media considerations for employers. I have been contacted numerous times in the last couple of weeks with questions about social media issues at work by both employers and employees and therefore I thought that it would be a good time to recap on some of the cases in this area and summarise key points for employers to note.

In this episode I will cover:

  • Cases where the employee was fairly dismissed for social media posts;
  • Cases where the Employment Tribunal decided that the employee had been unfairly dismissed for social media posts;
  • A case where the employer was permitted to rely on Facebook posts and a YouTube video to fairly dismiss an employee;
  • Best practice training for new staff using an example from a case against Apple Retail;
  • What you should include in your Social Media Policy;
  • Considerations with social media relating to Discrimination, Recruitment, Reputation & Confidential Information.

Action Points

  1. Review your social media policy, if you have one, if not get one!;
  2. Consider how important social media reputation is to your business & how you are protecting your business from your employees;
  3. Consider providing training or specific information to employees at the induction stage about the use of social media;
  4. Ensure you make it clear in your recruitment policy and/or process how you will use social media and online searches about candidates;
  5. I can help with all of the points at 1-4 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

British Waterways Board v Smith (2015)

Game Retail v Laws (2014) 

Gill v SAS Grand Services UK Limited

Whitham v Club 24 Ltd t/a Ventura (2011)

Stephens v Halfords PLC (2011)

Crisp v Apple Retail

Direct download: episode_72.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:23am EST

Employers Questions Answered

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 fifth and final episode in the series I answer some frequently asked questions from employers and give guidance on some good practice.

In this episode I will cover answers to the following FAQ's:

  1. I have an employee who is always taking time off at short notice because children are ill, what can I do?
  2. Can I stop my employee from taking holiday when returning to work from maternity leave?
  3. Can employees have time off for children's school events?
  4. I have taken on a new employee to cover whilst the regular employee is on maternity leave and they are doing a better job. Can I move the employee on maternity leave to a new job when she returns?
  5. I have an employee who is in a same sex relationship whose partner is pregnant, can my employee take paternity leave even though she is not a man (or father)?

Reference: Stelfox v Westco Building Components Ltd Employment Tribunal Case on returning from maternity leave.

 

Action Points

  1. Seek advice before taking action if you are unsure of an employees legal rights;
  2. Have a clear policy and procedure regarding family and parental rights;
  3. Consider going above and beyond the legal minimum to become the best employer in your industry;
  4. Seek advice and support to ensure you get it right. You can contact me by email alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or phone 023 8098 2006 or 01983 897003 if you would like to discuss.

 

 

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

 

 

 

 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:
guardian

 

 

Direct download: Episode_71_-_draft.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:41pm EST

Family Friendly Rights at Work: Shared Parental Leave & Parental Leave

Shared Parental Leave & Parental Leave

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 fourth episode in the series I summarise the two different types of Parental Leave that are available for employees who are parents.

In this episode I will cover:

  • The difference between Shared Parental Leave and Parental Leave
  • A summary of Shared Parental Leave
  • Employee eligibility for Parental Leave
  • How long employees can take for Parental Leave
  • Employee rights whilst taking Parental Leave and when they return to work
  • How an employer can postpone Parental Leave
  • Employee rights if they take Parental Leave
  • Practical tips on dealing with Parental Leave

You can listen to a whole episode on Shared Parental Leave here: Episode 12

Read more about Shared Parental Leave in two previous articles here and here

Action Points

  1. Ensure you understand the difference between Parental Leave and Shared Parental Leave;
  2. Check that you have details of both types of leave in your staff Handbook;
  3. Seek advice if you receive a request for Parental Leave or Shared Parental Leave and you are unsure of how to handle the situation. You can contact me by email alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or phone 023 8098 2006 or 01983 897003 if you would like to discuss.

 

 

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

 

 

 

 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:
guardian

 

 

 

 

Direct download: Episode_70.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:56am EST

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