The Coalition’s guidelines aims to help businesses to comply with the new regulations that will see agency workers being given the same working and employment conditions as those employed directly by the employer, after completing a 12-week period of work for the same employer.
The equal rights were previously agreed by the Labour Government and have since been reviewed by the Coalition Government, as they were concerned about how the new regulations would impact on businesses. However, it was decided that reforms on the new rights would be too difficult to implement because of the threat of legal action by either the TUC or Europe, where the regulations originated.
The guideline for the new rulings has been welcomed by employer groups but they warn that the rules remain arduous. There are also concerns about the financial and administrative burden the new regulations will have on businesses.
Lawyers have said that the Government’s guidance will help bring some clarity to employers, especially surrounding the rules for bonuses, pay and benefits.
Julie Quinn, head of employment law firm Nabarro, said: “Giving agency workers the right to equal pay and benefits as permanent employees from October will have substantial cost implications for businesses that rely heavily on agency workers.
"While the draft guidance does help clarify the scope of the rights to equal pay, benefits and facilities for agency workers, it does nothing to ease concerns about the administrative and financial burdens on employers."
For more information, please visit www.milsted-langdon.co.uk
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