Employment law changes next month: a reminder

April 2024 will see many more employment-related changes than has been the norm in recent years. Our employment legislation tracker will take you through to the underlying legislation, as well as telling you what is in store later in the year.

Here is an outline of the key April changes.

Holiday pay for atypical workers

Amendments to the Working Time Regulations introduce a new statutory holiday regime for two groups of atypical workers, for holiday years beginning on 1 April onwards.

The two groups of workers are “part-year” and “irregular hours” workers. The new measures will introduce separate rules for the way annual leave accrues for these workers, and also allow employers to pay them rolled-up holiday pay.

See our earlier blog here for more information.

National Minimum Wage

As in previous years, the minimum hourly rates that employers must pay to different groups of workers will increase on 1 April. The top rate (also known as the National Living Wage) will rise from £10.42 to £11.44 and there will be comparable rises for the other rates. On top of that, the minimum age for entitlement to the NLW will reduce from 23 to 21.

The full set of rates can be found here: National Minimum Wage rates

Family friendly rights

Four sets of changes will take effect from 6 April:

  • The right to request flexible working becomes a day 1 right and some of the procedural requirements will be relaxed, with up to two requests a year being allowed
  • Protection against redundancy will be enhanced for new parents. For mothers the protection which is currently available only during maternity leave will start when she informs her employer she is pregnant and end 18 months after the beginning of the expected week of childbirth.  Similar changes are being made for parents taking other types of statutory leave
  • Unpaid carer’s leave of up to a week in each year will be introduced
  • Paternity leave will be made more flexible, though the overall entitlement will not change

For more information about the first three changes see our blog here. For more details of the amendments to paternity leave see this blog posting.

Employee national insurance

Following a reduction of 2% implemented in January, the main rate of employee national insurance contributions will be reduced by a further 2%, following announcements in the Budget on 6 March. That means that the rate will be reduced to 8% from 6 April.

Employment tribunal limits

The annual uprating of tribunal limits takes effect when the appropriate date (typically the effective date of termination) falls on or after 6 April. The two key figures are:

  • the maximum compensatory award, which rises to £115,115
  • a week’s pay, which goes up to £700

For the full set of limits, see the Increase of Limits Order 2024.

Further explained

Remziye Ozcan, senior associate in the employment team at Mills & Reeve, discussed the recent employment law changes on Sky News Breakfast. Watch the full video below to find out more.

Our content explained

Every piece of content we create is correct on the date it’s published but please don’t rely on it as legal advice. If you’d like to speak to us about your own legal requirements, please contact one of our expert lawyers.

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