Implications for employees

A number of key employment rights derive from EU legislation, in particular those relating to equal opportunities, holiday and working time. A departure from the EU could allow such legislation to be weakened or even repealed. However, would the government take such radical steps?

  • Protections already in place in UK law: Some EU laws merely codify protections that already existed under UK law, for example, equal pay and discrimination protections. It seems unlikely that the government would simply remove these protections.
  • Employer expectations: An influx of changes to UK employment law could result in confusion and uncertainty for employers, in addition to the significant costs arising from complying with the revised regulations.
  • Worker expectations: UK workers have come to rely upon a number of rights that derive from EU law, such as protection against discrimination; family friendly rights; and regulations on working hours. It would be an unpopular move to significantly weaken these rights.
  • Not afraid to take unpopular decisions: In recent times, we have seen the increase in the length of service requirements to obtain unfair dismissal protections as well as the

Tips for managing workers

ACAS has published its guidance in light of projections drawn up by Macmillan Cancer Support in 2013 which estimated that by 2020 47% of the population would be diagnosed with cancer at some stage in their life.  With employees continuing to work longer, this issue is likely to become more prevalent for employers.

Employers need to be able to understand the law in relation to life-threatening illnesses and also appropriately manage staff who have these conditions.


The law

The Equality Act  2010 (the Act) prohibits discrimination in employment in respect of disability. The definition of disability in the Act is “a physical or mental impairment” which “has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on [that person’s] ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities“.

Under the Act, there are some medical conditions that are expressly deemed to be disabilities from the point of diagnosis, including cancer, HIV and multiple sclerosis. Employees with these conditions are automatically protected against discrimination under the Act.

If an employee suffers from one of these three conditions, or if their condition otherwise falls within the definition of disability, the employer must

Offering Hope to People with Mental Illness

Although the first Clubhouse began in the late 1940s, the Clubhouse model is not as well-known as more traditional rehabilitation programs for people experiencing mental illness. A Clubhouse provides opportunities to its members to lead more fulfilling, productive lives. By working together as valued participants, members develop friendships, regain a sense of belonging, and feel needed. Although there are core components of the Clubhouse model which are found throughout Clubhouses all over the world, the Clubhouse concept can be difficult to explain. That is why if you are interested in becoming a member, the first step is to take a tour, so you can see firsthand how things work.


Clubhouse Components

Clubhouses are organized around the belief that work and relationships are key to recovery. Certified Clubhouses follow proven standards, which are effective in helping people with mental illness to reach their goals. The components include:


Work-Ordered Day

The daily activity at a Clubhouse is similar to any work place, consisting of eight hour days, Monday through Friday. Members and staff work side-by-side, performing work for the Clubhouse. Members are encouraged to participate as

Soccer Guidelines: Almost everything You Have To Know

Learning a little more about the sport you cherish will usually support you have a more pleasant expertise. Soccer is such an excellent activity, and you’re here to find out how to enhance your activity. The skill sets intending to be explained can help you construct, discover and grow as you may make an effort to get to be the finest participant around the industry.

Each time a defender is speedily getting close to, pass the ball aside. Retain the golf ball until the safeguard if inhaling lower your neck area, then pass it an unprotected person. Your teammate whill possess a husband and wife moments prior to the defender close up in on the place.

If you wish to become a wonderful soccer mother, you need to make it a point to go to your child’s online games as frequently as is possible. Concurrently, you ought to be certain your youngster is protect adequate to experience enjoying in the occasions while you are not there. An excellent football person takes on for that team, him or her self and also for supporters, for the reason that order.

It is actually up against the guidelines to utilize any area of your respective palms

Employee privacy

A recent European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) case [1] has attracted much publicity in the UK press as giving employers the green light to read employees’ private emails. This is wrong. The decision actually confirms that employers may only review employees’ e-mails in limited circumstances.


Mr Barbulescu was employed as an engineer in charge of sales. His employer had a strict policy of not permitting private use by employees of its computer and telecommunications systems. Mr Barbulescu was asked by his employer to set up a Yahoo Messenger account, so he could communicate with customers.

The employer notified Mr Barbulescu that it had been monitoring his account and it believed he had been using it for private communications. Mr Barbulescu denied this, and the employer presented him with a 45 page transcript of all his Yahoo Messenger communications, including private communications with his fiancée and brother. Mr Barbulescu was dismissed for breaching the employer’s telecommunications policy.

Mr Barbulescu subsequently brought employment claims in the Romanian courts alleging that his dismissal was void since the employer had breached his right to privacy by accessing his private communications. Mr Barbulescu was unsuccessful before the Romanian courts, but the case was referred to the ECHR. The argument

Important changes to employment rates

1. National Living Wage

The NLW will take effect from 1 April 2016 and will apply to all workers aged 25 and over. The initial rate is set at £7.20 (50p above the current National Minimum Wage (‘NMW’) rate of £6.70 for those aged 21 and over). The current NMW rates applicable to those under the age of 25 will continue to apply and will be reviewed in October 2016.

In addition to this change, financial penalties payable by employers who underpay the NMW will increase from 100% to 200% of the underpayment due to each worker from 1 April 2016. The current maximum penalty of £20,000 per worker, remains the same.

If employers have not already done so, they must review worker pay rates and adjust accordingly to meet these new legal minimums. Commercially, a decision will also need to be made as to whether to just increase pay for those aged 25 or over or for younger workers as well.

2. Compensation & Redundancy Caps

In respect of dismissals made on or after 6 April 2016, there will be increased compensation rates for employment tribunal claims. The maximum compensatory award for unfair dismissal will increase from £78,335 to £78,962. Dismissals for whistleblowing, unlawful

Salary sacrifice scheme

During ordinary maternity leave (which is the first 26 weeks of leave) and additional maternity leave (the further period of 26 weeks), an employee is entitled to all their usual terms and conditions of employment, including benefits, save for those terms which relate to “remuneration”, which is defined as wages or salary.

Unless an employer provides for something more favourable, an eligible employee’s remuneration is decreased to the statutory amounts, which are:

  • First six weeks: the “earnings-related rate” (90% of the employee’s “normal weekly earnings”) or the “prescribed rate” (currently £139.58) whichever is higher;
  • Following 33 weeks: the prescribed rate or the earnings-related rate, whichever is lower
  • Remaining 13 weeks: unpaid

Childcare vouchers

Many employers make childcare vouchers schemes available to their workforce, usually by way of salary sacrifice. Due to the significant tax savings, these schemes prove popular with employers and employees.

However, how should childcare vouchers be treated during maternity leave when there is no salary to sacrifice? Should they be treated as “remuneration” and therefore suspended, or are they a non-cash benefit, which would need to continue?

Following guidance from HMRC first published in 2008, the general consensus was that these vouchers fell into the latter category and so employers needed to keep paying them

Expecting staff to work long hours

An employer will be guilty of indirect discrimination if it has in place a “provision, criterion or practice” (PCP) which places an employee at a substantial disadvantage compared to non-disabled employees, and cannot be objectively justified.


Facts of the case

In this case, the business did not have an express requirement for employees to work long hours but first asked Mr Carreras to work longer hours and then expected him to work late at least 2 days a week. The result was that Mr Carreras felt obliged to work late. Mr Carreras had recently returned from a serious cycling accident and as a result of the ongoing effect of the accident, was struggling to work the long hours he worked prior to the accident.



The Employment Tribunal (ET) found that there was no requirement to work long hours and so there was no PCP. The EAT disagreed: the expectation that he should work long hours was enough to form a PCP. The ET itself had observed that “he would have considered there were commercial and political reasons why he should work late”.



This case opens the gateway for arguments that working cultures that actively encourage and reward those that work long hours could be

A guide to what happens next

The immediate response in the UK to the referendum result was political chaos and an implosion of effective government and opposition. However, after the earthquake, a new government was quickly formed under Prime Minster Theresa May and a quieter period lies ahead while parliament and the country starts the process of understanding what has taken place, what has stood firm and what needs to be done to rebuild relationships within a re-constructed European settlement.

How the situation will play out is a matter of politics more than law. The EU treaties set out a mechanism (known as Article 50 of the Treaty of the European Union (also known as The Lisbon Treaty) whereby a Member State can indicate its intention to leave and, following that, there must be a negotiation of exit arrangements and the terms of a future relationship (see further below).  It is for the British government to invoke this article and, until that is done and exit arrangements are finalised, the UK remains a full member of the EU with all concomitant rights and obligations and subject to the jurisdiction of the Court of Justice of the European Union. The European Communities Act 1972, which gives domestic legal

What amounts to a reasonable adjustment

The G4S case involved an employee who had a back injury; as this was a long term condition they were classed as having a disability under the Equality Act.

When they came back to work they could not do their previous job and so were given another role he could undertake. This other role paid 10% less, but they ring-fenced his salary for a year. After a year, he was then given a choice to remain in the role but at a lower salary, or leave. He did not accept the lower salary, was dismissed, and then brought claim.

The Court held that reducing the employee’s salary, even in a different job, was an unreasonable adjustment under the Equality Act and upheld his complaints of unfair dismissal and disability discrimination.


The effect of the decision

Reasonable adjustments do need to be considered when an employee has a long term physical or mental impairment and protected by the Equality Act. Recent cases have tended to err on the need to make less, rather than more, adjustments. The G4S case has firmly stemmed that tide.

Any adjustments need to be reasonable given the financial resources of the employer. Here, however, the Court decided that:

  • there was no evidence

Someone with a Disability

As of March 24, 2014, the Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) implemented the Final Rule on Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Some say this is a “game changer” for increasing opportunities for individuals with disabilities to get back into and remain in the workforce. With all of the hype surrounding the revisions, you might be wondering, “what does it all mean?”

After several webinars, trainings, and article research, here is what I can tell you about Section 503 and what it means for you as an individual with a disability.


What is Section 503?

Under Section 503, businesses with at least 50 employees and $50,000 or more in federal contracts must take affirmative action to increase the number of people with disabilities that they employ.

The Final Rule encourages federal contractors and subcontractors to have at least 7% of positions in each job category held by qualified individuals with disabilities. This means that contractors will apply this 7% goal to each job category and if the contractor has 100 or fewer employees, the 7% goal will apply to the entire workforce.


What does this mean?

In order to achieve the Section 503 goal of hiring 7% of positions

Get a new or better job

It’s not surprising that one of the most popular New Year’s resolutions is to “Get a new or better job.” Whether you want to start working, are searching for a new job to advance your career, or even if you aren’t sure what to do next. A lot of us have been there. Just going through the motions and wishing for something better. Change is hard, but, not making a change is hard too.

Fortunately, the Manpower Employment Outlook Survey shows a positive trend in U.S. hiring plans for Quarter 1 of 2015. With employment opportunities increasing, it’s a good time to look for a new or better job. But how do you set yourself apart from other applicants? In our Get a New or Better Job series, I will explore all aspects of the job search including finding opportunities, the application process, interviewing tips, and communication techniques. Many real or perceived barriers may be standing in the way of you and your employment goals, but, job search tools and techniques don’t have to be some of them.

Let’s not kid ourselves; job searching can be time consuming, challenging, and at times discouraging.

Resume Writing Ideas

I bet you thought Step Two was “Write a Resume.” A common misconception is that resumes are “one size fits all,” meaning you submit the same resume for all of the jobs you are applying for. Sometimes that may be the case, but that might not be the best approach. I’ll tell you why.

In this day and age, it may not be feasible for a Human Resources department to view each and every application, resume, and cover letter. Instead, agencies may use software to screen and sift through applications and resumes, by searching for key words. If your resume does not clearly demonstrate that you have skills as required by that specific job, your application could be missed entirely through this process. This doesn’t mean that you should copy the job qualifications list onto your resume. That’s actually a really bad idea. Rather, you should look at the required experience and qualifications of the job, and be creative in your approach to set yourself apart from other applicants.


What should you be doing to set yourself apart from others as you write your resume?

Recruiters want to know that you’ve done your homework on the company you are applying to. Ask yourself

Youth Job Opportunities

Have you heard about Wisconsin Promise? Wisconsin is one of six sites participating in the US Department of Education’s demonstration of a promising path to success for youth receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Wisconsin Promise will help youth and their families meet their school and work goals in order to better their income and financial stability reducing poverty.

Wisconsin Promise will enroll 2,000 youth (between the ages of 14-16) receiving SSI and their families. Families who participate in the study will receive $30 in gift cards. A computer program will assign participants to one of two groups based on chance, like a lottery. Half of the youth will be assigned to the Promise Services Group and the other half will continue to receive Services as Usual.

The PROMISE initiative is intended to improve services for youth SSI recipients and their families. Services provided through Promise can help youth participants achieve better education and career outcomes, including:

  • graduating from high school college and career ready
  • completing post-secondary education and job training, and
  • obtaining competitive employment in an integrated setting.

As a result, youth participants can achieve their goals and move toward a stronger financial future.



Youth age 14 to 16 who are SSI recipients are encouraged to participate.


Work for People with Disabilities

Social Security is spreading the word about the underutilized Ticket to Work and Self-Sufficiency Program as a way for people with disabilities to achieve their employment goals.

At the end of April 2015, Social Security began mailing letters to beneficiaries who qualify for the Ticket to Work program. Social Security expects to mail up to 60,000 paper Tickets every month to beneficiaries who became entitled the previous month. Social Security expects these mailings to encourage a substantial number of beneficiaries to seek additional information on the Ticket program and to contact Employment Networks (ENs) and State Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) agencies for assistance in going to work.

Adults age 18 through 64 who get disability benefits, qualify for Ticket to Work. The program connects individuals to Employment Networks (ENs) who offer services and support needed to help individuals with going to work or earning more money. The goal is to help individuals earn enough money to become financially independent.

Remember! Social Security has rules that encourage individuals to try work. The rules are called work incentives. Work incentives offer safety nets that make it easier to try work without losing benefits right away or access to healthcare. Work incentives can also offer an easy way to

One Page Resume Rule

Contrary to what your college professor said, the one-page resume rule is a myth. Unfortunately, many listen to this outdated advice and devise ways to cram a complete professional history into one sheet. So much so that most job seekers expand the margins of the documents, use a small font size, and skimp on accomplishments rather than risk exceeding one page.

With today’s standards in resume writing, it is impossible to gain a full picture of a professional candidate in one 8-1/2″x11″ sheet of paper. Let’s break down the introduction of a resume and how it has changed over the years.

Objectives Have Been Replaced with Profile Statements: In the past, resumes started with only one sentence: “Seeking a challenging position where there is an opportunity for growth.” Now, resume introductions are more comprehensive, usually up to five sentences. As such, the profile statement takes up more room on the resume.

Keyword Section: Due to the advent of the Internet and resume data banks, all resumes need a list of core competencies that demonstrate the skills, knowledge, and abilities you have acquired throughout your work history. The keyword section alone adds three to five lines.

As you can see, where the beginning of

Think About Lying on Your Resume

It is tempting to put little white lies on your resume. These might include overstating your knowledge of required software (“If they call me, I’ll teach myself over the weekend”), a certification (“They’ll never go through all that trouble to find out”) or extending dates at a former employer (“They can’t find out. The company went out of business”).

How many times have you heard someone say, “Just put it on your resume. There’s no way they’re going to find out”?

It is tempting to put little white lies on your resume. These might include overstating your knowledge of required software (“If they call me, I’ll teach myself over the weekend”), a certification (“They’ll never go through all that trouble to find out”) or extending dates at a former employer (“They can’t find out. The company went out of business”).

So what’s the big deal? It’s not like you’re claiming to be a medical doctor, right? Who are you hurting anyway? You’re just stretching the truth a little to get your foot in the door — or so you tell yourself. If these are familiar thoughts, you might want to re-think them. Why? Because the risk of getting caught is real. The

Benefits and Taxes on Social Security

Benefits Specialists normally do not assist clients with their taxes unless they are qualified tax preparers. However, they should have a general knowledge of how Social Security benefits may affect a person’s taxes and what credits may be available to their clients. All Title II benefits may be subject to federal tax; this includes:

  • Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)
  • Retirement
  • Survivor (Widow(er) and Child)
  • Auxiliary benefits

Social Security benefits are federally taxable depending on a beneficiary’s total income and marital status. If Social Security benefits are a person’s only income, the benefits are normally not taxed and a federal income tax return need not be filed. Beneficiaries who receive Social Security benefits plus other income, need to complete the worksheet in the Form 1040 or 1040A instruction book to see if they must pay federal taxes on their benefits. The general guidelines are:

  • When a beneficiary files taxes as an individual and has combined countable income of between $25,000 and $34,000, federal income tax may need to be paid on up to 50 percent of SSA benefits. If the combined income of an individual is more than $34,000, up to 85 percent of the benefits may be taxed.
  • When a beneficiary files a joint return with his/her

Success Skills for Workplace

What are employers looking for in a good employee? Someone who knows how to do everything their job requires? Not necessarily. Most employers are looking to hire friendly people who have a good work ethic and who are polite, optimistic, and cooperative.  This is because it is easier for employers to teach someone a specific skill, for example, how to use a special kind of software or device, than teaching them “people skills,” also called “soft skills.”  Let’s explore the soft skills you need to succeed at work.


Soft Skills

Soft skills can be defined as characteristics and behaviors to help you to work effectively and harmoniously with other people. That encompasses a lot of things! Below are a dozen tips to help you do that.

  1. Be willing to accept challenges. Be eager to tackle the job or a new task.
  2. Manage what you do and be self-motivated. Look for ways to stay busy or to help out.
  3. Ask for clarification if you’re not sure what you are being asked to do. Seek help when needed.
  4. Be mindful of your body language, the tone of your voice, and even the words you use.
  5. Smile. Be positive, considerate and polite. Try to make eye contact.
  6. Work with others. Remember there’s no

Prosecution Agreement reached following a failure to prevent bribery

The concept of a “deferred prosecution” was introduced in the United States and, in a (radically) different form, has been adopted here, pursuant to Section 45 and Schedule 17 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013 (the 2013 Act).

A key feature of the deferred prosecution scheme under the 2013 Act is the requirement that the Court examines the details of any proposed agreement, to ensure that the statutory conditions are satisfied.  The statutory scheme under the 2013 Act is a two stage process:

Stage 1:  following commencement of negotiations to try and obtain a DPA, there must be a preliminary hearing, held in private, for the purposes of ascertaining whether the Court will declare that the proposed DPA is “likely” to be “in the interests of justice” and its terms are “fair, reasonable and proportionate” – the provisional approval stage.  The Court must give reasons for its provisional approval and if a declaration is declined, a further application is permitted.

Stage 2:  having got through Stage 1 and having received provisional approval, it is for the Prosecutor to apply to the Crown Court for a declaration, made in open Court, that the DPA is in the interests of