Do you know your Employees Statutory Rights?

Do you know your Employees Statutory Rights?

Written by Suzanne Gordon-Brown of SGB HR Service on 25-Jan-19

What’s the aim of your business? Is it to make as much profit as possible? To expand into new product or service areas? To provide a great customer experience? Whatever your answer to those questions – one thing you’ll need to achieve your goals and to grow your business is a team, to give you that helping hand and share the workload.

Growing your team is one of the most exciting and fulfilling aspects of building a business. It’s a measure of success, but it’s also a way to offer customers additional skills and delegate those jobs that you’d rather avoid!

Employing permanent staff however brings with it a whole new list of responsibilities. And, if you don’t have past experience of people management, it may seem pretty daunting.

At SGB HR Services, we’ve got you covered. We’ve set out all the need-to-know statutory obligations you as an employer should comply with – so you can lead your team with confidence and expertise.

Read on for a helpful timeline on your employees’ statutory rights from when they first join your company onwards.


When an employee first joins your company

They’ve impressed you at their interview and you’re keen for them to join you, so here are the initial steps you must take:

  • Provide a written statement explaining the main terms and conditions of their job within two months of the employee starting
  • Employees must be paid at least the National Minimum Wage
  • Employees must receive an itemised payslip which breaks down their wage and any deductions. From 6th April 2019, “workers” will be entitled to an itemised payslip. Currently, this right applies only to “employees”.  
  • Payslips will have to include the number of hours worked only where pay varies according to number of hours worked.
  • Remember that employees have the right to a certain amount of paid holiday each year, as well as being able to take paid time off for antenatal care, maternity, paternity and adoption leave 
  • Employees have the right to take unpaid time off to attend trade union activities, or for study or training if they are aged 16 -17, as well as the right to a reasonable amount of unpaid leave to look after dependents
  • Under health and safety laws, employees must be granted daily and weekly rest breaks, and as an employer you cannot ask your employees to work more than 48 hours a week
  • If an employee has been working for you for at least a month, but things don’t work out, you must give them notice if you are going to dismiss them
  • As an employer if you employ a part-time worker, they should have the same contractual rights as a full-time worker in a similar role (though entitlement to holiday and similar rights will be calculated on a pro rata basis)
  • If you employ someone on a fixed-term contract, they should have the same contractual rights as a permanent employee in a similar role


After six months (26 weeks) of working of working with you

  • The employee has the right to submit a request for flexible working


After a year of working for you

  • If your employee started work before 6th April 2012 and you dismiss them, they have the right to receive a written explanation of the reason
  • If your employee started their job before 6th April 2012, they can claim compensation if they are unfairly dismissed
  • The employee should be allowed to take unpaid parental leave


After two years of working for you

  • An employee will be entitled to redundancy pay if they are being made redundant
  • An employee can take paid time off to look for work if they are being made redundant


General employee rights

  • Employees must not be discriminated against in the workplace
  • Employees should not be dismissed or treated unfairly at work if they become a ‘whistleblower’ (someone who exposes suspected wrongdoing in their workplace)
  • As an employer, you must not make illegal deductions from employees pay
  • As an employer, if you dismiss an employee while they are pregnant or on maternity leave (not a wise thing to do!), they are entitled to receive a written explanation of the reasons why
  • If an employee is required to attend a disciplinary or grievance hearing, they have the right to be accompanied by a work colleague or trade union representative


Keeping on top of your legal duties

That’s just a few hints and tips of the rights and duties you should consider as an employer -it’s quite a lot to take on board right!

So how can you ease the burden of all this extra work and ensure you’re meeting your employees’ needs? Quite simply, it’s time to put a well thought-out and thoroughly researched HR strategy together.

By setting out your HR policies and procedures from the onset, these will be applicable for all further recruitment rounds and more importantly your staff will know their rights from the first day of starting their new job with you. Win, win!

Need any help or support? Contact Suzanne now - to discuss your HR needs, policies and/or procedures to ensure you operate best practice.


Login or Register to post a comment on this article.