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New employment laws on the way

June 16, 2023
Employment Law

At our recent Employment Law Update seminar, we reported on various plans to introduce new employment rights. So have there been any further developments?

What's going to change and when?

On 24 May 2023, the following laws received Royal Assent:

  1. The introduction of the right to take up to 12 weeks’ paid leave in order to spend time with a baby who is born prematurely or is otherwise in receipt of neonatal care.
  2. The introduction of a right to take a week's unpaid leave each year in order to provide or arrange care for a dependent with long-term care needs.
  3. The introduction of increased protection against redundancy from the point at which an employee informs their employer they are pregnant until the end of a period of six months following their return from maternity leave.

Although these new rights have received Royal Assent, they have not yet come into force.  Precisely when this will happen is presently unclear. The neonatal leave and pay rights are most likely to come into force in April 2025. The carers’ leave laws may come into force a little earlier, but not before April 2024.

Planning ahead

Although there is still some uncertainty surrounding precisely when these new rights will come into force, it is likely that we can have increasing confidence that it is a matter of ‘when’, not ‘if’. As a result, you may want to begin to take account of these additional rights when planning for the future.

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