Key changes to employment legislation are on the horizon

LCF Law: James Austin 24.01.16

A leading Yorkshire law firm is advising businesses and employees to be aware of major changes to employment legislation in 2019, which include increases to national minimum, living wage and contributions for auto-enrolment pensions, as well as changes to payslips, which are all being introduced in April.

The national living wage, which is for employees aged 25 and over, will increase from £7.83 to £8.21 an hour on 1st April 2019, and the national minimum wage will rise from £7.38 to £7.70 an hour for 21 to 24-year-olds. Those aged between 18 and 20 will see wages increase from £5.90 to £6.15 an hour and from £4.20 to £4.35 an hour for 16 to 17-year-olds. Apprentices will also see a 20p increase, to £3.90 per hour.

In addition, from 6th April 2019 all employers with staff in a pension scheme for automatic enrolment must increase their contribution from 2% to 3% whilst employee contributions must increase from 3% to 5%.

Also from 6th April 2019, all employees and workers, including contractors and freelancers, must be given itemised payslips. This should also detail the number of hours worked, where pay varies depending on the amount of time worked.

James Austin, Associate Solicitor from the employment team at LCF Law, said: “This year will see a raft of changes being introduced to employment legislation that will benefit employees and workers. Any HR departments and employers that haven’t started preparing for April should do so now because time is running out.

“Those with large numbers of employees earning national living and minimum wages are likely to face big increases in their wage bills and employers will also need to review their payroll systems and data processes to ensure payslips comply with the new legislation.”

James added: “Another major change to employment legislation means that from 1st January 2019, companies with more than 250 employees have to reveal the ratio between CEO pay and average staff pay, as well as benefits. The first reports will be unveiled in 2020, but companies need to start compiling the data in good time.

“These same companies also have to report on their percentage gender pay gap annually.  They should have published their first reports on or before 4 April 2018, so again many companies will need to be preparing the information for their second reports now. We would advise any companies that are unsure about their obligations to seek professional advice immediately.”