Employment law changes | What's new this year for working parents?

What's new this year for working parents?

Balancing responsibilities at home and at work is never easy, which is why it's important to have clear employment policies in place for working parents.

This year will see a lot of changes in the legal world for employers and employees alike, and by fully understanding the laws that govern company policies, businesses will be in a better position to provide proper support to their ‘working parent’ employees which, in turn, should translate into improved employee satisfaction and higher retention rates.

Karen Holder, founder of A City Law Firm, talks to HR Grapevine and delves into the complexities of new rights for pregnant ladies, those with babies in neonatal care, and carers - so get ready to update your staff handbook and maybe consider some HR training. There’s also some advice about Retained EU law in the face of Brexit.

Protection from Redundancy (Pregnancy and Family Leave) Bill

Currently the Employment Rights Act 1996 allows the Secretary of State to make regulations regarding redundancies during periods of maternity leave, adoption or shared parental leave but this new Bill, passed in October 2022, will increase protection against redundancy, during or after the individual takes leave.

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At the moment, an individual on maternity, adoption or shared parental leave can be made redundant, but employers have an obligation to offer them a suitable alternative vacancy where one exists.

The new Bill intends to increase protection further with an expanded period covering from when a woman tells her employer she is pregnant until 18 months after the birth.

The 18-month window ensures that a mother returning from a year of maternity leave can receive six months’ additional redundancy protection, and this window will also apply to Maternity Leave and Shared Parental Leave, therefore extending the protected period.

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