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Posted 6 June 2014
by Simon Sanger-Anderson

The Queen’s Speech: What it means for employment law

In the Queen’s speech, which was given on 4 June 2014, the Government has pledged to introduce new employment legislation that will have an impact on employees and workers alike.

The Government has introduced four new Bills which will need to be approved by Parliament, as well as intending to increase the amount of apprentice places to two million by the end of Parliament’s session and to particularly focus upon the Higher Apprenticeships which are akin to degree standard.

In turn, the relevant Bills and the purposes of each are:

Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill

  • To introduce tougher penalties for employers who flout legislation on National Minimum Wage;
  • reform the area of zero hours contracts; and
  • reduce delays in Employment Tribunals.

Private Pensions Bill

  • Launch a new “collective pension scheme” whereby individuals can contribute with others into the same scheme.

National Insurance Contributions Bill

  • Simplification of HMRC’s collection of NIC from the self-employed; and
  • HMRC will be given new powers to enforce payments in anti-avoidance situations

Childcare Payments Bill

  • A new tax-free childcare subsidy, which will be worth up to £2,000 a year per child under the age of 12, will be introduced in the autumn of 2015

The details of the Bills may change as they progress through the Houses of Parliament, however it is definitely a new area that employers need to keep up to speed with as this is an ever changing area of law.

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About the author

Partner and solicitor within the employment team, Simon also leads the firm's cross departmental Social Housing Practice Group