robbryanassociates

Covid-19 Latest updates

In Uncategorized on March 16, 2020 at 10:36 am

Our latest updates and resources relating to coronavirus will be posted on our website – https://www.robbryanassociates.org.uk/2020/03/12/coronavirus/

Coronavirus – Advice for employers

In absence, Employment law, government, pay, Uncategorized on March 4, 2020 at 1:38 pm

For our most up to date information see our webpage – https://www.robbryanassociates.org.uk/2020/03/12/coronavirus/

With the government preparing for widespread cases of the coronavirus(Covid-19), employers should monitor the official advice to maintain an up to date picture of the situation and best protect the health and safety of their staff.

Where can I find the official advice?
Government list of guidance
Government advice for businesses
NHS advice
Government action plan

What can employers do to minimise the risk in the workplace?
ACAS has produced a useful guide providing practical advice to help employers protect their staff. Good hygiene is key to preventing the spread of infection.
We suggest that you print the NHS guide out and pin to your noticeboard or another prominent place. You should also issue regular memos to circulate the latest official advice.
The government guide has advice for what do if someone in the workplace falls ill with symptoms linked to the virus or is diagnosed.
Employers should prepare an action plan which is ready to be put in place should there be an outbreak of the virus at work.

Sick Pay
If an employee has coronavirus:
Your usual sickness procedure and entitlement apply.

If an employee is advised to self-isolate:
If the employee has been advised by NHS111 or a doctor to self-isolate they should inform their employer immediately. If they are given written notice they are entitled to sick pay. The latest legal advice as of yesterday is that isolation without the illness does not qualify for SSP – although many are saying it would be good practice to pay. The Trade unions and others are seeking specific emergency laws to have a sick pay fund for those who wouldn’t normally be paid – they argue without this people will be motivated to attend the workplace with symptoms.
Some employees will be able to work from home while in isolation.

Latest news update Workers to get SSP from first day off https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-51738837 (NB: this is the government’s intention – we await further detail)

Working from home
At present, there is no advice for workers to avoid travel in the UK but employers may want to consider in advance what provision there may be for working at home.

Travel abroad
As and when the virus becomes widespread, in some places travel and movements are likely to be more restricted.
If travel is for business purposes, consider if the meeting could take place via video conferencing instead.
If an employee is travelling for leisure we advise you to discuss with the employee their plans and pose the question regarding returning and self-isolation. You can agree in advance that should they need to self-isolate it would be unpaid authorised absence. It’s then an elective choice to go on holiday taking a risk or to cancel.

New Rights for Bereaved Parents

In Employment law on January 27, 2020 at 1:15 pm

The government has confirmed that parental bereavement leave will become a statutory right from April 2020.

Up until now, whether organisations provide time off work as bereavement leave when employees suffered the loss of a child, and any payment for this leave period, was an individual decision made within each business. The new legislation, also known as Jack’s Law following a campaign by bereaved mother Lucy Herd, will give a day one right to two weeks’ leave following the death of a child under the age of 18, or a stillbirth after 24 weeks of pregnancy.

Parents will be able to take the leave as two weeks or two one-week blocks. Those with 26 weeks continuous employment will be able to claim statutory pay which is expected to be in line with other family related pay. As of April, these rates will rise to £151.20.

There are still details to be confirmed including rules on eligibility, but the new regulations are expected to include:

  • birth parents
  • adoptive parents
  • legal guardians
  • those with court orders providing daily care responsibilities
  • foster parents (although it may not include emergency foster care)
  • kinship carers.

Employers should note that the introduction of statutory parental bereavement leave does not replace an employee’s right to time off for dependents.  The difference between these entitlements is that time off for dependants is intended to allow employees leave to deal with an unforeseen emergency only, such as the unexpected death of a child, whereas parental bereavement leave is to provide a length of time off work to allow parents to undergo the grieving process following their child’s death. The employer should also consider ongoing ways in which a bereaved parent can be supported once they return to work.

Action: these changes should be reflected in your next updates and revisions to your employment documents. When was the last time you updated yours? Contact Rob Bryan Associates on 01462 732444 for advice