A new year brings along plenty of approved changes in employment legislation, here’s a summary of the most important ones which may effect your business.
Once a Disclosure and Barring Service (previously Criminal Records Bureau) check has been conducted, the results will be available online to enable employers to confirm that no new information has been added since the check was originally made. This means that an employee will not have to obtain a new check each time he or she starts a new job.
The UK will increase parental leave from 3 months to 4 months in March 2013. This leave remains unpaid and the change is required under the EU parental leave directive. Under the Parental Leave Directive, the parents of a child under the age of five will each have the right to take up to 18 weeks’ unpaid parental leave, an extension of five weeks from the current provisions.
EU member states have until 11 May 2013 to implement legislation that gives increased protection to healthcare workers, including a provision to prevent injuries caused by sharp objects.
A phased introduction of Real Time Information (RTI) will see employers submitting payroll data to HM Revenue & Customs online on or before payments credit employees’ bank accounts. These new measures could greatly increase the workload for employers. By October 2013, all employers will have to submit under RTI.
The current system allows employers to issue PAYE information to HMRC at the Payroll Year End using electronic versions of the traditional forms P35 and P60. The new RTI system will require firms to send payroll data to HMRC via the Government Gateway, a centralised online service, on or before the date each employee is paid.
The payroll data will include all employee personal information, details of their pay, tax, national insurance and net pay for that pay date together with additional information such as the number of hours an employee typically works.
After 2013 the education leaving age will rise to 17. And from 2015 it will rise again, to 18.
The government is raising the leaving age because research shows that young people who carry on learning or training until the age of 18 earn more money, are likely to be healthier and less likely to be in trouble with the police.