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Why employers need a road map

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Why employers need a road map

January is the time for new beginnings, taking stock and planning ahead.  Employment law continually changes, both with new legislation coming into force and case law constantly being created by the Tribunals and Courts.  Now is the time to consider if all your policies and procedures are in place, particularly given the reforms that have been made to employment law in the last few months.

Employment is a fundamentally important area of law for business clients, as well as employees who find themselves made redundant. It is constantly changing and many employers struggle to keep up with their obligations and responsibilities.  I believe that clients want solutions to their problems, not further complications.  What we try and do is give employers a “road map” to help them navigate the employment road from beginning to end with as little fuss as possible.  The key is being prepared in the first place.

My approach is to provide sensible legal advice in plain English to employers to try and avoid problems occurring in the first place. It is a legal requirement that every employee should be given a written statement of his or her terms and conditions of employment, within eight weeks of starting work. Better still, a business should offer written contracts that go beyond the basic terms and conditions to give themselves more flexibility over their staff. I can advise on contracts of employment and other key documents that can be required, such as staff handbooks and consultancy agreements.

Many employers also worry about employees misusing social media at work or taking confidential information with them (such as client and supplier lists) when they move on.  We can help with serious issues like this or more mundane, but often equally important issues like parental leave, maternity/paternity issues and so on.

At the other end of the employment relationship we can help you navigate disciplinary/grievance processes and also redundancy situations. We can draft settlement agreements to resolve employment disputes and can also advise individual employees who have been handed them by their employers, provided there is no conflict in us acting.  In my experience most people, be they corporate clients or individuals, want to avoid litigation and mediation can be a good way of avoiding a protracted and expensive court dispute.

From this Spring, ACAS will offer Early Conciliation in every dispute heading to an Employment Tribunal. The aim of the scheme is to reduce the number of claims that get issued but for those that do, we can provide representation throughout the whole process from drafting the ET1 to the final hearing and all points along the way.

We’re local, based in Welwyn Garden City town centre with good parking nearby. If you have an employment law issue please get in touch to see how we can help.

Michael Scutt of Crane & Staples - employment law expert

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