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What’s new in employment law in 2015

Here are five areas of legislation you ought to know about in 2015:

The Fit For Work service will give employers free occupational assistance for employees who have taken more than four weeks off work due to sickness. You will be able to claim up to £500 in tax relief on payments for their medical treatment under this scheme.
Shared parental leave begins, as well as shared parental pay. This means parents are allowed to share the mother’s maternity leave and maternity pay (if applicable). It gives parents extra flexibility in caring for their children, and will apply to couples where the expected due date of the birth (or adoption) occurs on or after 5 April 2015.
Parental leave arrangements change (this is separate to shared parental leave, above). Previously, parents were allowed to take a period of unpaid time off work if they have a child who is under the age of five. From 5 April, this age limit is being raised to 18.
Changes in defined-contribution pension schemes. Some of the restrictions in place governing how employees over the age of 55 are able to draw benefits from their pension plans for defined-contribution schemes will be lifted. Employees were previously allowed to take 25% as a lump sum; this limit will be removed entirely from 6 April 2015.
Wages and statutory pay increases. Increases in the National Minimum Wage will come into force from 1 October 2015. This follows a consultation with the Low Pay Commission (LPC) that advised the government to raise the minimum wage as quickly as possible without harming the economy. From 6 April 2015, the standard rate of statutory sick pay increases. Statutory maternity pay, ordinary paternity pay and adoption pay will increase from 5 April 2015.

Are you uncertain about an area of employment law, or do you need advice or support on a particular issue? Call us. We are employment law specialists and can give you the help you require. Call 01302 320621 or email you are an employee or an employer, we can help with:

Unfair dismissal
Employment tribunals
Employee rights
Employment legislation
Discrimination at work
Unfair treatment at work


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