6th April 2020. Add it to your iPhone's calendar. And your Outlook diary. You can even pencil it into your Filofax if you really want to. Why? Because that’s the date some of the biggest Good Work Plan (GWP) changes come into play. Here are a few of the laws you need to know ahead of April 2020.
- The right to a written statement
The law protects employees more than workers. Employees have a written contract of employment. After a set period of service, they also have rights to sick pay, a notice period, flexible working, and protection from dismissal. Workers won’t always have a written contract with an employer. They’re also not entitled to the same rights and protections as employees. Currently, employers have two months to give new employees a written statement of their employment contract and rights—the same doesn’t apply to workers. But from 6th April 2020, all workers will have the right to a written statement from their first day of employment. The goal? To create more transparency around the terms of their employment.
- Closing the pay loophole for agency workers
From 6th April 2020, employers won’t be able to avoid paying equal pay to agency workers with 12 weeks’ continuous service. This move closes the existing loophole under the Swedish Derogation model. The Swedish Derogation model lets an agency hire staff on permanent contracts so they become employees. The agency then finds them jobs and pays their wages. Because the agency doesn’t decide the rate paid to their employees, they might not receive the same wage as workers in similar roles elsewhere. In between jobs, the agency only has to pay the workers the National Minimum Wage for up to four weeks while they’re looking for new roles for them. If you currently have a contract with agency workers under the Swedish Derogation model, you’ll need to provide them with a written statement by 30th April 2020. It should also explain that your workers get equal pay treatment after 12 weeks of service. And if you don’t? Your agency workers can take you to a tribunal, and even receive compensation if you breach equal pay laws.
- Agency workers get a Key Facts Page
The government also announced that from 6th April 2020, agency workers will receive what it calls a Key Facts Page to give them more information about a job before they accept it. The Key Facts Page can’t be longer than two A4 pages, and should tell agency workers:
- The type of contract they have.
- Their minimum rate of pay.
- How they’ll be paid.
- The right to stable contracts
One of the biggest changes is the right for workers and employees to request more stable contracts after 26 weeks’ service. The main aim is to protect zero-hours staff who don’t always have reliable hours. So for staff who want more certainty around their working pattern or the number of hours they’ll work every week, there’s the chance to ask for a more stable contract. Watch this space for the date this change takes place. Good Work Plan dates for your diary Other Good Work Plan changes are arriving in April 2020—but the government hasn’t set all the dates yet. For now, there’s one date you need to know: 6th April 2020. Want to get to grips with the Good Work Plan ahead of April 2020? Call for advice today.