You may have heard of the recent announcements made by Vince Cable and the coalition government in regards to employment law reform. The main focus lies particularly in the qualifying period for unfair dismissal; which is due to increase from 1 year to 2 years in 2012.

"Our proposals are not- emphatically not- an attempt to give businesses an easy ride at the expense of their staff. Nor, have we made a cynical choice to favour flexibility over fairness." – Dr. Vince Cable, Business Secretary, Speech to the EEF, 23-11-2011

As the Employment Services Director I believe it is important now more than ever that you seek professional advice as some employers may believe that this extension of the qualifying period and further proposed reforms may make them safe from tribunal claims.

However, we have to stress that you need to be aware that none of the proposed reforms have actually come into force yet. Additionally, a number of these proposals, in our view, are not even likely to make it on to the statute books. So while these reforms are there to boost employer’s confidence, please don’t become complacent.

Remember the government is seeking a call for evidence in the majority of these proposals before even issuing a consultation, and importantly we are unlikely to see any changes at all until 2013, which will mean a lot of opportunist employees trying to make tribunal claims before these reforms are passed.

We are already seeing increasing claims from employees with less than a year's service for day 1 rights such as discrimination. So it is important, more than ever, that you make sure you are covered from all angles to avoid being taken to tribunal. Make sure you call us on 0844 892 2772 to ensure you avoid any claims being made against you. If you have any queries regarding the new reforms please don't hesitate to contact me at alanprice@peninsula-uk.com.