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Contracts of Employment What are your obligations as a business?

Contracts of Employment

Contracts of Employment

What are your obligations as a business?

Kerseys Solicitors Employment Law team briefly highlights, in this blog, the legislative requirements to which your business must adhere, in addition to the consequences of failing to get it ‘right’.

Requirements in relation to contracts of employment

There is no legal requirement for a contract of employment to be in writing; it can be oral, written or a mixture of both.

However, in accordance with Section 1 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 (ERA), an employer is under a duty to provide workers with a written statement of terms. This must be given not later than two months after the beginning of their start date, even where the employment ends before that date. This will not be required if a written contract of employment is provided, containing all the particulars specified in Section 1 of the ERA.

Therefore, we would advise that all contractual terms are in writing.

Notification of change to contracts of employment

Any changes in the terms of employment must be notified by the employer, in writing, within one month of the change.

It is unlawful for employers to make unilateral changes to a contract of employment without facing possible consequences.

Failure to provide a Section 1 ERA written statement – what are the consequences?

An employee cannot bring a standalone claim in the Employment Tribunal against an employer either for failing to provide a written statement of terms or where a dispute arises as to its accuracy.

However, an additional award can be made by the Employment Tribunal where a Claimant is successful in bringing an action under Schedule 5 of the ERA 2002. Common claims under Schedule 5 include unfair dismissal and detriment in employment.

The Employment Tribunal may award the Claimant 2 – 4 weeks gross pay up to a maximum limit capped by statute.

Practical considerations

Employers should ensure, as a minimum, that workers are provided with a written statement of terms adhering to all the requirements in section 1 of the ERA.

If you are concerned that your contracts of employment or written statement of terms are not compliant, you should take legal advice and amend these as soon as possible.

How we can help

At Kerseys Solicitors, we are committed to helping businesses and individuals during challenging times. Our Employment Law team provides HR support to ensure you follow the correct processes.

Our specialist employment law team pride themselves in making employment law simple, they can review and amend your contracts of employment to ensure that your business does not fall short of the legislative requirements and can also advise you how to best implement any contractual changes required by your business.

If you require assistance, please contact Annalie KingPartner and Head of our Employment law team or Rosie Brighty at Kerseys Solicitors in Ipswich on 01473 213311Kerseys Solicitors in Felixstowe on 01394 834557 or Kerseys Solicitors in Colchester on 01206 584584, alternatively can email us at [email protected] or visit our website and click “Call Me Back”.

You are not alone; Kerseys Solicitors HR Services & Employment Law Team are just a click away visit our website and click “Call Me Back” and a member of our Employment Law team will be happy to contact you at a time that is convenient to you for your free 30 minute initial consultation.

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