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Review of the year 2014 from an employment lawyer's perspective

22 Dec 2014

So, was 2014 a momentous year for employment law, or not? Shared parental leave became fact of life on 1 December, but will probably not have a real impact until next year.

We had plenty of developments with regard to holiday pay, of course: the Lock v British Gas decision about holiday pay and commission seems to have escaped many employees (and employers perhaps), whereas the EAT decision on holiday pay and overtime was, for a day in November, top story on the BBC news.

Zero-hours contracts were still in the news: both new legislation and litigation by zero hours workers about their rights are working their way through the system.

ACAS early conciliation began in April and seems to have been a qualified success.

Certain business immigration rules changed (of course) and we now have to advertise vacancies before recruiting from abroad.

Employment status remains a difficult area – a slew of cases about beauty consultants, stable-hands, interpreters, law firm partners and others have grappled with the categories of employee, worker and self-employed, without arriving at easy-to-follow principles that we can all apply in practice. A government review is looking at this area.

Case law on TUPE continues to evolve, with decisions about who is part of an organised grouping on a service provision change, and about the impact of a change in location on a transfer.

Not momentous, perhaps, but always interesting. So what lies in store for 2015? In 2015 there is lots more to come, including a number of cases on collective redundancy consultation, a case about when an employer is deemed to know about a disability, an EU case on whether travelling time is working time, a decision about acting rationally in determining bonuses, and even a case on how to calculate a day’s pay.

Plus two very important events:

  • the general election on 7 May; and
  • our Strategic Employment Law Conference – more details coming soon.

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