Policy News Journal - 2016-17

The Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals ……………………………………………………………Policy News Journal

A garden leave provision will commonly be found in a senior employee's contract of employment. A comprehensive provision can be one of the most valuable tools in the employer's toolkit when it comes to terminating employment. Such a clause allows the employer to remove duties from an employee and exclude them from the workplace whilst they are serving out their notice period, irrespective of which party gives notice to the other. Often this is referred to as 'gardening leave' as the employee is required to stay at home, in the garden if they wish! Garden leave clauses typically also prevent an employee from having any contact with colleagues or customers whilst expressly preserving the employee's obligations of confidentiality and fidelity to the employer. This makes it an excellent business protection tool. If drafted correctly, it is at the employer's discretion whether or not to trigger the garden leave clause, there is no right for the employee to be put on garden leave. An employer will usually want the widest discretion to put the employee on garden leave for some, all or none of their notice period. The downside for the employer is that because the employment contact is still in effect during any period of garden leave, it remains bound to pay the employee and continue to provide all their contractual benefits. This is in contrast to restrictive covenants which continue to apply to an individual after employment has ended and the employer's contractual obligations no longer apply. Accrual of annual leave According to the recent judgment of the European Court of Justice in the case of Maschek v Magistratsdirektion der Stadt Wien, an employee on garden leave does not accrue annual leave for the duration of that period. The only exception will be where the employee is able to show that they are unfit for work due to sickness and in such circumstances annual leave will accrue during those periods. It may still be preferable to expressly provide for the treatment of annual leave in the garden leave drafting. Garden leave is not the same as suspension and there is no need for there to have been any wrongdoing for an employer to place an individual on garden leave.

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Jury Service upper age limit increase 19 December 2016

The upper age limit for jury service increased from 70 to 75 on 1 December 2016.

The upper age limit for jurors in England and Wales has risen from 70 to 75 . The move is aimed at making sure the criminal justice system keeps pace with demographic changes in society, including the increasing role that older people are playing in the workplace.

Please note that at the time of writing the information on GOV.UK about Jury Service has not yet been updated to reflect this change.

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Acas advice over the festive season 15 December 2016

The Christmas season can have a big impact on businesses as holiday requests increase and the winter weather can cause travel disruptions .

While thousands will be celebrating with time off, many others will carry on working. A common myth is that an employee is entitled to have bank holidays off but the reality is it depends on what's in their contract .

Acas has a festive guide with advice on:


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