Changes in the Law You Need to Know About for 2017

The law is not a fixed, monolithic slab of legislation. Governments make reforms in response to pressure from interest groups, changing public opinions and to keep consistent with other countries we have a strong relationship with.

This can have complicated knock effects for your business, so it’s important to keep abreast of the latest changes in business law, and consult your lawyer whether they are online or on the high street to make sure you’re not only compliant with the law but also taking advantage of any extra opportunities changes may afford you.

Gender Pay Reporting

The Government is to start collecting data on the disparity in pay between men and women. Whether you are in the private, public or charitable sector, if you employ 250 people or more you will have to prepare to release this information to the government.

The information requested includes not just the salary amount, but bonus pay as well the distribution of men and women in the different quartiles of your business’ pay distribution. You need to be ready to release this data not just accurately, but also in accordance with the data protection act: should you leak any employees personal data when doing this you could suffer stiff consequences.

The results on this are likely to be tighter regulations on the gap between male and female pay so it might be wise to get ahead of the game and start evening out the disparity now.

Apprenticeships

If you have an annual payroll in excess of £3 million, you will soon be due to pay the Apprenticeship levy, a .05% of your total salary payment towards a fund for more and better apprenticeships.

Larger employers can access the paid amounts with a 10% contribution from the government to set up apprenticeships and begin training young people, while smaller employers can do the same, funding only 10% of the cost of the Apprenticeship with the government providing the remaining 90%

Higher Minimum Wage 

The minimum wage has recently risen again, up to £7.50 an hour, with the government aiming at £9 an hour by 2020.

If you rely on minimum wage employees, this could affect your annual payroll significantly, so be prepared for continuing rises in minimum wage. Don’t forget this does also equate to more money circulating in the economy, so you could see increased as a result!

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