Harassment is a form of unlawful discrimination and can include behaviour that individuals find offensive even if it’s not directed at them, and even if they do not have the relevant protected characteristics themselves. It is important for an employer to be able to recognise harassment in the workplace to reduce the risk of an employee lodging an employment tribunal claim against them. Therefore it is in every employer’s interest to promote a safe, healthy and fair environment in which people can work in.
When a firm makes more than 20 or 100 people redundant such as through closing down a factory site, very special rules apply as to an employer’s obligations to its workforce. Failure on the Employer’s part such as when closures occur out of the blue and almost overnight can lead to employees being able to make a claim even if the company has gone into administration or liquidation and the company no longer exists. Most typically the claim is for what is known as a Protective Award.
Christmas is almost upon us…as are the much awaited office Christmas parties. Whilst no one wants to be the office scrooge and detract away from the positivity of such an event, employers should be aware of their potential liabilities.
A class action brought in the UK by campaign group “Google You Owe Us” was blocked in the High Court yesterday (Monday 8th October 2018). They allege that in 2011/12 Google bypassed privacy settings on Apple iPhone handsets and collected data about millions of people in contravention of the Data Protection Act 1998. The High Court was told that the information collected by Google included data about race, sexuality, political leanings and social class.
Yesterday (10 July 2018) the UK Information Commissioner, Elizabeth Denham, published a progress report in relation to her office’s investigation into the use of data analytics in political campaigns. This investigation has focussed on Facebook and Cambridge Analytica. The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has said it intends to fine Facebook £500,000 for two breaches of the Data Protection Act 1998. This is the maximum fine that can be imposed under that legislation. However, the position could have been much worse for Facebook.
The government has been urged to investigate the practice by many employers of forcing employees to repay training costs when they leave employment. In some cases such costs have run into several thousand pounds.
The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), the regulator responsible for policing the current legislation, has had difficulty enforcing the current legislation. Since 2010, of the £17.8 million in fines that it has imposed, for the making of nuisance calls and the sending of nuisance emails and texts, only just over half have been paid. The ICO’s efforts have been hampered by some of the companies it has fined going into liquidation rather than paying their fine.
A typical scenario may be where an employee accused of misconduct claims that they were not ‘thinking straight’ or indeed that their behaviour was ‘out of character’, caused by stress or issues with mental health.
You should not forget the other obligations that companies have under the Companies Act 2006 (CA 2006), such as, the obligation to keep a register of persons with significant control (PSCs).
The decision of whether or not to suspend an employee suspected of misconduct can be a difficult one for many employers. If an employer suspects an employee of serious misconduct, suspension may be an appropriate step to take but only in circumstances where the employee’s presence at work would either (a) jeopardise the fairness of the ensuing investigation or (b) where their presence could pose a potential threat to the business or other employees.
Taylor Wimpey has launched a Ground Rent Review Assistance Scheme. This comes following some heavy media coverage surrounding the issue of ‘doubling ground rent’.
Anxiety, depression and stress are now the leading cause of sickness absence in the UK and an estimated 70 million working days are lost every year because of mental health. This makes mental wellbeing a central concern for all workers and their employers.
A story very much in the headlines at the moment is the hacking of Uber’s computer system.
Maternity Action have released a report on how women are being unfairly dismissed while on maternity leave, returning from work and even during pregnancy.
Linder Myers is proud to feature in the Legal 500 legal directory. Each year the Legal 500 directory undertake an independent, full and comprehensive analysis of law firms across the United Kingdom in order to assess the best law firms across the country and by region.
A private company limited by shares is a legal entity that has no physical presence. It can only act through its directors and at least one of them must be a natural person. So what happens when the sole director of a company dies? How will the company continue to trade if there is no officer to act on its behalf?
What happens if, during an employee’s absence on maternity leave, an employer discovers that an employee had not been doing the work they should have been doing or, alternatively, finds that their maternity cover replacement is much better at the job?
A consumer is a person who purchases goods, services or digital content for their personal use and not as part of their business, profession, trade or craft. Law considers consumers to be in a weaker bargaining position in relation to traders and therefore offers them broader protections in an effort to bring balance to the trader-consumer relationship.
It is a practice of many employers to suspend employees who they suspect have committed an act of gross or serious misconduct.
However, many employers are unaware that by suspending an employee they may be exposing themselves to claims for constructive unfair dismissal.
One of the lead stories on BBC 1 Breakfast this morning was about the overhaul of UK data protection laws.
British citizens will soon have more rights to control what is done with personal information about them. The UK data protection watchdog is also to get new powers and will be able to levy higher fines.