What does the Law Say?

The Employment Rights Act 1996 is the legislation covering employment law in the UK which consists of hundreds of pages of text covering every aspect of employment.

Every year brings with it some important new legislation for employers to negotiate.

Nearly all workers, regardless of the number of hours per week they work, have certain legal rights.

Sometimes an employee only gains a right when they have been employed by their employer for a certain length of time, and when this applies, the length of time before the employee gains the right is listed below. 

Catering Employment Law

The Employee’s Right

From When

The right to a written statement of terms of employment

Within two months of starting work

The right to an itemised pay slip

1st day of starting work

The right to be paid at least the national minimum wage

1st day of starting work

The right to paid holiday

1st day of starting work

The right to time off for trade union duties and activities.

 2 years of employment

The right to paid time off to look for work if being made redundant

1st day of starting work

The right to time off for study or training for 16-17 year olds

1st day of starting work

The right to paid time off for antenatal care

1st day of starting work

The right to paid maternity / paternity leave

1st day of starting work

The right to ask for flexible working to care for children or adult dependents

1st day of starting work

The right to paid adoption leave

1st day of starting work

The right to take unpaid parental leave for both men and women (if you have worked for the employer for one year) and the right to reasonable time off to look after dependants in an emergency

1st day of starting work

The right under Health and Safety law to work a maximum 48-hour working week

1st day of starting work

The right under Health and Safety law to weekly and daily rest breaks

1st day of starting work

The right not to be discriminated against

1st day of starting work

The right to carry on working until you are at least 65

1st day of starting work

The right to notice of dismissal

After 1 month of starting

The right to written reasons for dismissal from your employer

After 1 month of starting

The right to claim compensation if unfairly dismissed

After 2 years

The right to claim redundancy pay if made redundant

After 2 years

The right not to suffer detriment or dismissal for ‘blowing the whistle’ on a matter of public concern (malpractice) at the workplace

1st day of starting work

The right of a part-time worker to the same contractual rights (pro rata) as a comparable full-time worker

1st day of starting work

The right of a fixed-term employee to the same contractual rights as a comparable permanent employee

1st day of starting work 

How do I stay compliant?

Most small to medium sized businesses will struggle to keep up to date with this level of information, but those that don’t could be in danger of being embroiled in an employment tribunal.

A case in point is that if you have an employee and fail to give them a written statement of terms of employment within two months of starting work, that in itself can be grounds for a tribunal.

To help you keep within the law, NCASS has several tools at member’s disposal:

  • Templates for the most common forms of employment type
  • A helpline available during business hours direct to an employment law specialist

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