With so many important stories in the news at the moment, it can be easy to miss information about the latest changes to employment law. However, the ViewHR team are here to provide employers with an update on the key recent changes…
National Minimum / Living Wage
On 1st April 2022 the National Minimum and Living Wage (NM/LW) rates increased. The new rates are now:
- 23 and over (the National Living Wage): £9.50
- 21 to 22 (National Minimum Wage rate): £9.18
- 18 to 20 (National Minimum Wage rate): £6.83
- Under 18 (National Minimum Wage rate): £4.81
- Apprentice (National Minimum Wage rate): £4.81*
* The apprentice rate doesn’t apply to every employee who is on an apprenticeship programme, but rather if an apprentice is aged under 19, or aged 19 or over and in the first year of their apprenticeship.
If you have employees who are aged under 23, and/or apprentices who are aged 19 or over, it is important to add a note to your diary of their birthdays, and/or the anniversary of when they started their apprenticeship, as you may need to review their pay at that time.
The previous rate for employees aged 23 and over was £8.91, and so £9.50 represents an increase of around six percent. This means that you may have some people within your organisation where previously were above the NLW, but now are very close to it. It may therefore be a good time to review their pay also.
Statutory Sick Pay
The weekly rate for Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) has now increased to £99.35 per week (previously £96.35). During the earlier stages of the Covid-19 pandemic, the government introduced the Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme to enable employers to recover SSP related to Covid-19, however, this scheme ended on 17th March.
Family Friendly Payments
The weekly amount for statutory payments relating to Maternity, Adoption, Paternity, Shared-Parental and Parental Bereavement Leave have now increased to £156.66.
Statutory Redundancy Pay
If an employee who has been employed for over two years has their employment terminated by reason of redundancy, they are entitled to receive Statutory Redundancy Pay (SRP). This is calculated based on their length of service, age, and weekly pay. When calculating SRP, a cap is applied to the weekly pay amount. From April, this cap has now increased to £571 per week.
Employers and employees who would like to check an employee’s entitlement to SRP can use the gov.uk calculator, which is available here: https://www.gov.uk/calculate-your-redundancy-pay.
Right to Work Checks
The process for checking those new employees who are EEA biometric residence cardholders (BRC) have the right to work in the UK is being updated; from 6th April 2022 employers should carry out checks via the Home Office online checking service, available here: https://www.gov.uk/check-job-applicant-right-to-work.
It is important for employers to remember that they could face a civil penalty if they employ an illegal worker and have not carried out a correct right-to-work check.
The ViewHR team are experienced in undertaking HR audits to ensure that employers are up-to-date will all aspects of employment law. If you would like to find out more, please get in touch today for an initial discussion.