What did the Queen’s Speech tell us about employment law?

Wed 12th Jul 2017

The Queen’s Speech on 21st June included a number of pieces of legislation for employers. Philip Sayers, Employment lawyer at Coodes Solicitors outlines the key points.

Immigration Bill to replace EU law after Brexit

With the Brexit negotiations with the European Union now underway, immigration is clearly a key issue. The Immigration Bill will lead to a new national policy on immigration, replacing EU law. We do not yet know the details, but the new national policy will include new powers concerning the immigration status of EU nationals. Many employers will be keen to know the details and how it will relate to any of their workers who come from overseas.

Data protection for a digital age

Cyber security is now a very serious concern for businesses of every size and sector. A new Data Protection Bill will replace the Data Protection Act 1998 and will implement the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which is something every business now needs to prepare for. Again, the details remain unclear but the Bill is designed to make the UK’s data protection framework fit for a digital age and give people more control over their personal data. From an employment perspective, it might change the way we can hold data on employees.

Increase in the National Living Wage

The Queen’s Speech announced that by 2020, the National Living Wage will increase to 60% of median earnings and will then continue to rise in line with average wages. The National Living Wage is currently £7.50 an hour and only applies to workers aged 25 or over. It had previously been forecast that the National Living Wage would increase to £9 an hour by 2020. Tying it to 60% of median earnings would amount to about £9, based on current projections, but of course things change and the figure could be quite different by 2020.

Tackling the gig economy

Issues around the ‘gig economy’ and the rights of casual and self employed workers have been prevalent over the last 12 months. It was no surprise then that the Queen’s Speech cited the Taylor Review, which examines modern employment practices.

For more information on this or any Employment enquiries contact Philip Sayers, Employment team, Coodes Solicitors on 01872 246200 or philip.sayers@coodes.co.uk.

Wed 12th Jul 2017

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