• IR35 in the Private Sector

The Off Pay-roll working rules for the private sector came into force on 6 April 2021.  These were delayed by a year because of the pandemic.

Medium to large organizations will now have to assess whether a contractor they are engaging with falls within the reformed IR35 rules.  If IR35 does apply, the organisation will be responsible for tax and national insurance.

The individual will also have to be provided with a status determination statement.  A good tool to use in this regard is the HMRC CEST tool (Check Employment Status for tax).  The link is set out below:

Check employment status for tax – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

  • Are you paying the correct minimum wage?

Rates were increased from 1 April 2021 and the national living wage which is the highest level (for those aged 25 and over) increased to £8.91 per hour.

  • If redundancies are considered, the rate has changed

The rates that apply to any redundancy entitlement increased from £538 per week to £544 per week.

Please check this page for more help on redundancies

  • Other increases to statutory entitlements 

The weekly rate for statutory maternity/paternity/adoption/parental leave increased to £151.97 from 4 April 2021.  Statutory sick pay has increased to £96.35 per week.

The limit for an unfair dismissal claim has increased to £89,493.

  • Can an employee be fairly dismissed if they refuse to wear a face mask as required by a client?

A delivery driver refused to wear a face mask while in the cab of his vehicle, contrary to the requirements of a customer and his employer’s handbook making it clear that he had to follow customer instructions relating to the wearing of PPE.

The customer reported the driver to his employer and banned him from their site.  Following an investigation, the driver was summarily dismissed.  The dismissal was held to be fair and the tribunal said that the employer was entitled to take account of the importance of maintaining good relationships with its customers and the difficulties caused by the employee being banned from the customer’s site.

Check this page for help on unfair dismissal 

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