Voluntary overtime and holiday pay

By | Employment, Legal Updates | No Comments

The Working Time Directive (WTD) and therefore the Working Time Regulations (WTR), which implements the WTD for the UK, states that workers must have the right to paid holiday.  The aim with respect to this paid holiday is to ensure workers do not suffer a disadvantage on taking their holiday.  This was seen in the cases around commission which found that commission payments should be reflected in holiday pay. With respect to overtime, when working out someone’s weekly pay you would look to…

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I own a business with my spouse and we are separating: what do we do?

By | family, Legal Updates | No Comments

Many couples going through a divorce have assets to divide between them, such as a family home, investments and pensions. However, often in our work matters are complicated by the fact that the parties own a business together. Very few people would choose to run a business with someone they have just separated from, yet a business is not always easy to value and cannot necessarily just be sold. On the contrary, a family business may need to continue operating…

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Workplace stress – employer’s liability

By | Employment, Legal Updates | No Comments

‘Work related stress’ as a reason for absence can send chills through any HR manager because such sickness absence is not easily cured with a week of rest or a dose of antibiotics.  It requires careful handling, patience and time. Although stress is not an illness in itself, but a state of mind, it can lead to mental illnesses and physical ailments. Stress if often brought about in the workplace due to some kind of change.  For example, that might…

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Injury to feelings award: an update

By | Employment, Legal Updates | No Comments

The Equality Act 2010 prohibits discrimination in respect of the nine “protected characteristics” of age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex, and sexual orientation. If a claimant succeeds in a discrimination claim, an employment tribunal may: Order the respondent to pay compensation. This is uncapped. Make an appropriate recommendation aimed at reducing the adverse effect of the discrimination. Make a declaration as to the rights of the claimant. Compensation for discrimination can…

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How has the election and Brexit affected the property market?

By | Residential Property | No Comments

The summer months are one of the busiest times of year for people buying and selling and currently, it is difficult for property lawyers to see any negative effects of Brexit on a day to day basis, despite ongoing economic and political uncertainty. So where are we with property prices?  The ONS said that average house prices in the UK have increased by 5 per cent in the year to May 2017.  This time last year, it was 1.2 per cent. …

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What is a grievance?

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A grievance is a term given to a complaint, concern or problem which is raised by an employee with their employer.  This definition is reflected in the ACAS Code, which provides guidance to employers and employees about how a grievance process should be dealt with.  The requirements set out in the ACAS Code are not onerous and are supplemented by a non-statutory ACAS guide which gives further practical guidance on handling a grievance. Failure to follow the Code cannot lead to a…

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Employment Tribunal fees declared unlawful

By | Employment, Legal Updates | No Comments

Judgment has recently been given on a momentous case in the matter of R (on the application of Unison) (Appellent) v Lord Chancellor (Respondent), which was Unison’s challenge against employment tribunal fees. Employment tribunal fees were introduced on 29 July 2013.  Unison, the public sector trade union, challenged the lawfulness of these fees by way of judicial review, but this was dismissed in 2014 due to lack of evidence as to whether the new fees were preventing people bringing claims….

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Top ten tips on managing sickness absence

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For some smaller employers dealing with sickness absence is stepping into unknown territory.   When dealing with this for the first time, employers can feel daunted about what they should and should not do. Whilst every case is different and may require its own specialist approach, we have set out below some tips to bear in mind when dealing with sickness absence in your workplace. 1. What are your rules? It may be as an employer you already have a policy on sickness…

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MacDonald Oates sponsors R.A.B.I. afternoon tea

By | Charity | No Comments

MacDonald Oates is proud to sponsor R.A.B.I. and their good work in the farming community both locally and further a field.   Thank you to Tim and Anne Butler for hosting a wonderfully sunny afternoon tea at the Lavender Fields in Selbourne.     The event raised money for the welfare charity, the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution (R.A.B.I.), which helps people in the farming industry of all ages in crisis. As well as providing practical help, R.A.B.I. also pays out…

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Father wins direct sex discrimination claim for failure to pay enhanced shared parental pay

By | Employment, Legal Updates | No Comments

This case considers sex discrimination and pay during shared parental leave.  Shared parental leave was introduced in 5 April 2015.  It allows a woman who is on maternity leave to give up her maternity leave and instead allow a partner/father to take the remaining amount of leave – known as Shared Parental Leave.  It is aimed at allowing women and their partners to share the care of the new born baby, except for the first two weeks which is compulsory…

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