Changes to Section 1 Statements/ Written Particulars of Employment

All new employees and workers to receive updated terms on or before first day of work

29.01.2020

Employees are already entitled to a Section 1 statement of particulars detailing various specific employment terms that should be provided within two months of the start of their employment. This document does not have to, but could comprise the full contract of employment. Frequently, offer letters will contain much of the required information and direct the employee to ancillary documents such as the staff handbook or other policies for details on holiday, sick pay and absences, disciplinary and grievance procedures.

In order to protect those workers in the gig economy and other low paid sectors, from 6 April 2020 all new employees and workers[1] will be entitled to one document which sets out most[2] Section 1 statement of terms on or before the first day of work. This requirement will also apply to any new contracts issues to existing employees, if an existing worker requests a Section 1 statement after 6 April 2020 or if a term of the contract which should be stated in the new Section 1 statement is amended.  In such case, the new statement should be provided within 1 month of the request/change.

The Section 1 statement of terms has been extended to include:
  • Terms and conditions relating to working hours, specifically, normal working hours, normal working days of the week, whether such working days or variable and if so, the basis on how that variation is determined
  • Any other paid leave, such as family rights
  • Any other benefits additional to sick pay, holiday entitlement and pension (both contractual and non-contractual)
  • Details of any probationary period
  • Any entitlement to training provided by the employer and whether any is compulsory to complete
  • Any other training which the worker is required to complete and which is not financed by the employer.

If an employer fails to comply, the worker may make an application to the tribunal for a declaration as to what part of all of such terms are. Additionally, if a claimant brings a successful discrimination, unfair dismissal or breach of contract claim, the tribunal must award the workers at least two weeks’ pay and this may be increased to four weeks’ pay.


[1] Workers are employees and any individual who works under or enters into any other contract whether express or implied and (if it is express) whether oral or in writing, whereby the individual undertakes to do or perform personally any work or services for another part to the contract whose status is not by virtue of the contract that of a client or customer of any profession or business undertaking carried on by the individual (section 230(3) of the Employment Rights Act 1996).

[2] Details of pensions, collective agreements, employer provided training and certain information on disciplinary and grievance procedures must be provided within 2 months of the start date. Information on matters such as incapacity and sick pay, paid leave, employer related training, pension and disciplinary and grievance policies can be set out in ancillary documents which are readily accessible by the employee such as handbooks and policies.

Lidia Poczok

Author

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