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Will employment rights be cut?

28 / 03 / 2013

Will employment rights be cut?

The government has been making a lot of movements on employment laws lately, most of which concern that of employees rights. But will this mean that employees will have fewer rights in future?

‘Shares for rights’

One of the most controversial proposals that has been put forward is chancellor George Osborne’s suggestion that employees could exchange their rights for shares in their company. This was an idea that was put forward as a plan to boost hiring in businesses.

Under his plans, employees would be able to claim shares of between £2,000 and £50,000 in their company. In exchange, they would give up rights such as unfair dismissal, redundancy pay, having time off work for training and being able to arrange flexible working. On top of that, women would have to give double the amount of notice before going on maternity leave.

Mr Osborne’s plan has not had a positive response from either the House of Lords or from business groups, with a vast majority of them voting against it.

Legal aid to be cut

But having employees give up their rights isn’t the first government idea that has come up which could see more people at the mercy of their employers.

Government is hoping to cut its spend on legal aid each year by lowering the threshold of who is able to apply for it.

The high end of who can gain legal aid is £32,000 but people who earn more than £14,000 will have to face an in-depth means test.

Employment cases were one of the areas where the government said it expected to see money saved.

Nevertheless, if people cannot access the justice system because they can’t afford it then they can claim that it is against their human rights. But this reasoning will only grant them access to legal aid in exceptional circumstances.

Employment review

The government has planned a whole host of changes to employment law as it looks for ways to improve growth in the economy and boost the jobs market. Changes are planned to take place between spring of this year through to spring 2014.

But if changes like the ones mentioned here go through then how will the employment market shape up in future?

Barclay Simpson – experts in corporate governance recruitment