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September 2023 – HR & Employment law update for employers

Our latest HR and employment law newsletter for employers is below – if you would prefer to view this on our video, simply click the box opposite.

For the latest HR news, don’t forget to follow myHRdept’s LinkedIn channel.

September 2023 – HR & Employment law update for employers

Welcome to our September 2023 HR and employment law update, the first of the autumn!

Conservative Party Conference – Hunt announces £11/hour Living Wage

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has announced that from April 2024 the Living Wage will increase to £11 per hour. This is the headline minimum wage rate, applicable to most workers aged 23 or over.

Due diligence training – sexual harassment

A reminder first of our due diligence topic for September, which is sexual harassment ….. if you didn’t carry out the training in September, the material is still available – due diligence training reduces the risk of a claim against you, it takes very little time and therefore makes perfect sense.

Sexual harassment is in the news almost daily it seems, you’ll remember the McDonalds (McHarassment) coverage, and of course there was ‘that kiss’ which eventually led to the removal of the Spanish FA’s top man.

We also have a short video briefing for employers on the topic of sexual harassment and that can be accessed from the newspages of JCHR, our sister website for payroll and HR combined outsourcing, and you can see that through this link.:

We’ll be bringing some more due diligence training for you later in October, keep an eye on our LinkedIn pages for more about that.

Larger and riskier employers will be expected to do more to build their due diligence defences and if you are a larger employer, or one with a higher risk of sexual harassment occurring, you should talk to us about a more tailored due diligence training programme for you.

myHRdept developments

Last month I eventually persuaded our recruiter Jas to appear on video, and that was obviously the kiss of death because this month I’m both sorry and pleased (for Jas) to tell you that she is moving on from myHRdept, to join one of our fabulous client’s internal recruitment teams. I’m not sure if our client has announced it internally yet, so I shan’t say who, but the move represents an excellent progression opportunity for Jas, and so we give her our full support – she leaves at the end of October.

Recruitment doesn’t stop, and we’re still doing a lot of it – our HR team have long been recruiting for HR vacancies via our sister company Recruitment HR, and the team, which includes former recruiters (including me for exec vacancies), will be happy to pick up other support vacancies too, so if you need to recruit a role, give us a call and we’ll discuss the best way of going about it with you.

As ever, our fee structure for recruitment is extremely affordable, and you won’t have to deal with commercial recruiters who are often more interested in selling you any candidate than in finding the right candidate.

Fines for employing illegal workers

I mentioned last month that fines for employing illegal immigrants are going to be steeply increasing, and here is the low down:

  • Up to 5 years prison for the worst offenders (prison sentences are most likely to be restricted to the criminal fraternity)
  • Current fines of £15,000 – £20,000 will increase to £45,000 – £60,000 for repeat offenders
  • New fines will come in ‘early 2024’

When announcing the increases in fines the Immigration Minister said:

There is no excuse for not conducting appropriate checks and those in breach will now face significantly tougher penalties.”

I need to stress, these fines are not theoretical – at myHRdept we have known employers who have received fines of thousands of pounds, in one case even a relatively small restaurant had to pay nearly £10K.

I said last month, I’ll say it again, if you haven’t had an audit of your right to work evidence documents for your staff lately, you should really consider asking myHRdept to book this in over the next few months.

Employment tribunal cases – disability discrimination

Couple of interesting cases this month, we’ll start with our Elana who’s going to look at a case involving disability discrimination, an employee with severe menopause symptoms. After that it will be back to me for another case, this time concerning Lloyds bank, who rather overreacted when they fired an employee for asking a question in a training session:

 

Sponsorship visa costs up 15 – 20%

That’s more or less it from us for this month, other than to remind you those of you who are sponsors about the increasing costs of sponsorship visas, which takes effect this month.

From October 4th2023 most work and visit visas will increase by 15%, and certificates of sponsorship by at least 20%, meaning that a 5-year skilled worker visa can now cost £12K.

We have a practical article on how employers can protect some of their investment if the employee decides to leave, and you can read the article by clicking here.


If you’re thinking of outsourcing your HR, payroll or employment law needs, why not contact myHRdept? Call us on 01628 820515, email us at 
enquiries@myhrdept.co.uk to discuss your requirements, or contact us via our website and we’ll call you back.

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