Employment Law Changes from April 2020

Liz Chiva

HR Director

We know that we’ve only just got Christmas out of the way, but April will soon be here, and there are some quite significant employment law changes coming into effect which we have highlighted below.

Parental Bereavement (Leave and Pay) Act 2018

This new piece of legislation entitles parents and primary carers (adopters, foster parents and guardians) who suffer the loss of a child (under the age of 18 or a stillbirth after 24 weeks of pregnancy) to two weeks of parental bereavement leave.

Employees will qualify for this leave from Day 1, but only Employees with 26 weeks’ continuous service will receive paid leave at the statutory rate and other employees will be entitled to unpaid leave.

Entitlement to a statement of ‘written particulars’ (Contract of Employment) from Day 1

Currently all employees, regardless of the number of hours they work each week, are entitled to receive a written statement, from their employer within 2 months of starting work.

This new change will mean that both employees, and workers, will be entitled to a statement of ‘written particulars’ as a day one right.

This means that your current practices may need to change.

Rules for calculating a week’s pay for holiday purposes

Currently, the holiday pay of a worker or employee who has irregular working hours is calculated by averaging the number of hours worked over the previous 12 weeks.

From April 2020, this ‘pay reference period’ will be extended to 52 weeks (or the number of weeks worked if less than 52).

This change is designed to avoid workers losing out where their working hours are subject to fluctuations, such as seasonal variations.

Increased Protection for Agency Workers

Currently, agency workers are entitled to be paid the same rates as permanent employees after 12 weeks, unless they are working under specific contractual arrangements, under which they receive a minimum level of pay when they are between assignments (known as the ‘Swedish derogation’ model).

From April 2020, this distinction will be abolished, and the right to comparable pay will apply to all agency workers after 12 weeks.

The government has also introduced an obligation to provide agency workers with a ‘key facts’ page providing information on their contract and pay.

If you would like to discuss any of the above in more detail, then please do not hesitate to contact us on 0161 476 8276 or email

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