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Employment Law Journal: May 2014

Gary Henderson and Anita Wisby examine the draft shared parental leave regulations

For some time, the government has been looking at reforming the system of statutory leave and pay available to employees on the birth or adoption of a child, in order to give parents more freedom to decide how such leave can best be taken to suit their family. As Nick Clegg put it last November:

Gurpreet Duhra analyses the potential impact of tribunals’ new power to penalise employers for breaches of employment law

A significant change to the employment tribunal system has been introduced by way of the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013 (ERRA), which applies to claims presented on or after 6 April 2014. Section 16 of the ERRA provides employment tribunals with the discretion to impose financial penalties on employers that lose a claim, in addition to any financial award made to the claimant.

What is the practical impact of January’s changes to TUPE, asks Jeffrey Jupp

It is three months since the majority of the changes to the legislation protecting employees’ terms and conditions on the transfer of an undertaking came into force. Employers and their advisers are now starting to focus on what the changes mean in practice. This article considers the main changes and some of the practical issues being thrown up.

Julian Yew and Charlotte Logan discuss employees’ rights in a surrogacy situation

The statutory rights of employees who are pregnant or who adopt a child are set out in ss71 to 75 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 (ERA) and in secondary legislation on the qualifying conditions for maternity and adoption leave and pay. For employees who embark on the often complex journey of surrogacy, the legal position was unclear until the recent decision of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) in CD v ST [2014].

Rachel Farr considers when an employer is liable for the actions of its employees

An employer is liable for the torts of an employee where the acts in question took place ‘in the course of employment’ and there is a sufficient connection between that employment and the acts concerned. This is the case even if the employer has done nothing wrong.

Sharon Tan and Paul McGrath weigh up the impact of the abolition of the statutory discrimination questionnaire regime and the introduction of new non-statutory Acas guidance

The statutory questionnaire procedure has been a familiar feature of UK discrimination law since the mid-1970s. It has provided a prescriptive and formal regime under which individuals who consider that they have been the victim of unlawful discrimination, or inequality of pay, have been able to ask questions of the alleged perpetrator. Most often, the alleged perpetrator, and recipient of the statutory questionnaire, has been the individual’s employer or prospective employer, although questionnaires have also been served on colleagues (current, prospective or former).

Ongoing uncertainty about employers’ duty to collectively consult staff about redundancies and business transfers means that the law in this area remains complex, warn Jessica Shemmings and Clare Davis

Over the past year, there have been several cases, as well as legislative changes, which affect employers’ collective consultation obligations in respect of redundancies and transfers of undertakings. This article provides a round up for practitioners.