Latest updates and stories from Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce and its Members

Work law changes boost

Written by Paula Devine | 17 Jan 2013

Commenting on today’s announcements on the Employment Law Review, published today by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, Dr Adam Marshall, Director of Policy and External Affairs at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) said:

"Employers invest a lot of time and resource in recruiting and training the right members of staff. Ending the employment relationship is always a last resort, but is sometimes necessary. As always, the devil is in the detail, but these proposed measures are fair and should reduce stress, uncertainty, and delay for both employee and employer.”

On the proposed cap on awards for unfair dismissal:

“The average compensation awarded for unfair dismissal is less than £6,000, but the maximum award of £72,300 often creates unrealistic expectations, making claimants less likely to settle, and employers less willing to risk defending themselves. The proposed cap will make employers more confident in recruiting and also in defending themselves, if accused of ending employment unfairly. However, given how few people earn £72,300, we question the merits of maintaining this damaging headline figure.”

On the consultation of the new ACAS Statutory Code for settlement agreements:

“Settlement agreements offer a consensual and dignified way for both parties to end the employment relationship, avoiding the stress, uncertainty and delay of a tribunal, and allowing all parties to return their focus to work. The proposed legislation will prevent settlement offers being used in future tribunal proceedings, giving employers confidence and security to make an offer to the benefit of both business and employee. The Statutory Code must offer employers flexibility, and be designed to smooth the process, not to trip them up.”

On the consultation into early conciliation:

“Making early conciliation through ACAS compulsory for all claimants is just common sense. Where the parties are unable to agree, they can go to tribunal, but this should always be a last resort, and in many cases professional mediation will avoid this unpleasant and costly outcome.”

On the consultation on proposed changes to TUPE:

“TUPE legislation too often prevents failing companies from being successfully restructured. We welcome the government’s intention to remove its burdensome ‘gold-plating’ of the Acquired Rights Directive. This should go some way to enable companies to be turned around, which will help businesses to focus on saving viable jobs, and make it easier for employers to consult those affected.”


Topics: Bedfordshire, Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce, business, employment, networking, offices, British Chambers of Commerce, Luton, News, SEMLEP, Politics

Paula Devine

Written by Paula Devine

Paula is Head of Membership and Global Services at Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce.

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