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How Can NFU Employment Service Help Your Business?

As a member of NFU Employment Service, you have access to expert employment law advice and guidance, enabling your business to become and remain compliant with employment legislation.

Members can spend less time dealing with employment related matters and more time managing their business.

Our Legal Helpline gives you unlimited legal support through our team of Employment Specialists, ranging from advice on recruitment to redundancy.

Below you can find a few popular topics in which we advise our members. Click on the link for further information:
 












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Recruitment

Job interview_17953We understand that recruiting the right employee based on the skills, experience and attitude required by your business is crucial and you want to get it right. When recruiting new staff some key legal areas to be mindful of include:

Equality Act 2010 – it is important that those involved in the recruitment process are aware of the rules on discrimination and how to avoid it. Did you know that a candidate could make a claim under the legislation for discrimination even as a non-employee.

Illegal Employment – ensure that those you are recruiting have the right to live and work in the UK and have the necessary paperwork to prove this. There are significant fines for those that employ illegal workers.

Status – are you sure that the person you are employing is genuinely an employee or genuinely self-employed. Remember both the courts and HMRC will look beyond the ‘status label’ you impose and will look at the reality of the relationship


How can NFU Employment Service help your business with recruitment:

  • Various template documents available including a job application form to assist during recruitment process
  • Online Manual Chapter on Recruitment with up-to-date information on topics such as Making a Job Offer, Medical Records and Testing, Eligibility to Work.
  • Access to our Helpline where our advisers can assist you with your recruitment related queries


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Contracts

hand signing contract_8506By law, employers are required to issue employees with a written statement of particulars of employment, within 2 months from them starting the job. The legislation sets out that certain terms must be included in such a document such as holiday entitlement and place of work.

Many employers want to agree to further additional terms such as a probationary period and the requirement to hold a valid driving licence. Failure to issue such a document could result in a financial award being made to the employee.
 
 

How can NFU Employment Service help your business with contracts:

  • A standard template Written Statement of Particulars of Employment to give to get you to comply with the basic requirements.
  • Over 35 extra optional additional clauses you can select from to include in the Written Statement of Particulars of Employment.
  • A template Written Statement of Particulars of Employment specifically drafted for agricultural and horticultural workers to whom the Agricultural (England and Wales) Order applies to.
  • Online Manual Chapter on Contracts of Employment and Contract Variation
  • Access to our Helpline where our advisers can assist you with your contract related queries.
     

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Pay

save money _33107Paying staff correctly is very important, not only from the point of complying with minimum wage rules but also from an employee perspective. Pay queries vary from finding out the minimum pay rates, what deductions are permissible and what you can do when you overpay an employee.

Do you know what you are able to deduct from an employee’s pay where accommodation is provided to an employee?
 



How can NFU Employment Service help your business with paying staff in line with the law:

  • Online manual chapters including on topics such as National Minimum Wage, Equal Pay, Deductions.
  • Specific guidance in the chapters on pay guidance for agricultural and horticultural workers to whom the Agricultural (England and Wales) Order applies to.
  • Access to our Helpline where our advisers can assist you with your contract related queries
     

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Holiday Entitlement

Spades on beach_11797All workers are entitled to paid holiday regardless of the number of hours or days per week they work. As a minimum all workers must receive at least 5.6 weeks of paid holiday a year.

Ensuring your workers exercise this right is also a consideration that businesses should take account in terms of health and safety – all workers are required to have a break from work.

Calculating holiday entitlement for part-time workers, casual workers and workers with a varying work pattern is not always straightforward.
 

How can NFU Employment Service help your business with Holiday Entitlement matter:

  • Online Manual chapter on Holiday and Holiday Pay
  • Specific guidance in the chapters on holiday entitlement and pay for agricultural and horticultural workers to whom the Agricultural (England and Wales) Order applies to.
  • Template Staff Handbook Policy on Holiday
  • Access to our Helpline where our advisers can assist you with your holiday entitlement related queries.
     

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Sickness Absence

Woman checking temperature_12251Most businesses from time-to-time will have to deal with employee absences due to sickness, be it the odd days to frequent short term absence to more prolonged long term sickness and illness.

Dealing with staff absence can be dealt with informally or more formally depending on the circumstances. Often, short term sickness absences can be dealt with internally with consultation meetings, return to work meetings and Fit Note guidance from the GP. In longer term sickness absence more formal doctor’s report may be required as well as consideration for reasonable adjustments in line with duties under the Equality Act 2010.
 

How can NFU Employment Service help your business with Sickness Absence:

  • Online Manual Chapter on topics such as Sick Pay, Long Term Ill Health Absenteeism and Access to Medical Reports
  • Template documents including Return to Work forms, Medical Report Consent Form and Letter to GP enquiring about sickness absence
  • Staff Handbook Policy on Absence Management
  • Template Additional Clause on Discretionary Company Sick Pay
  • Access to our Helpline where our advisers can assist you with your holiday entitlement related queries.
     

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Discrimination

Group of workers_16060Discrimination in the workplace is a very serious matter. Did you know that if your business is faced with a discrimination claim, you could face an uncapped fine.

Not only is it costly from a financial perspective, it can also have very serious reputational issues for a business too.

There are 9 protected characteristics under the legislation.


 
 

It is against the law to discriminate against anyone because of:

  • age
  • being or becoming a transsexual person
  • being married or in a civil partnership
  • being pregnant or having a child
  • disability
  • race including colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin
  • religion, belief or lack of religion/belief
  • sex
  • sexual orientation
     

How can NFU Employment Service help your business with Discrimination:

  • Online Manual Chapter on the Equality Act 2010.
  • Template documents including Equal Opportunities Forms and Policies.
  • Access to our Helpline where our advisers can assist you with your discrimination related queries.
     


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Family Friendly Law

Pregnant woman at computer_12234In the ever evolving modern world, the government continue to try and balance the rules to ensure a work-life balance.

Parents have a variety of rights and protections and Employers need to be aware of the rules and procedures.

The current array of family friendly legislation entitles eligible parents to the following:

  • Maternity leave and pay
  • Paternity leave and pay
  • Adoption leave and pay
  • Time off for dependants
  • Flexible working
  • Shared parental leave

With most of these rights, there are statutory deadlines to respond to requests. There are also responsibilities on the employee in wishing to exercise their rights – for example, a woman on maternity leave normally needs to give her employer 8 weeks to change her return to work date following maternity leave.
 

How can NFU Employment Service help your business with Family Friendly rules:

  • Online Manual Chapters on the various rights
  • Staff Handbook policies on the rights
  • Template Letters, for example the forms required to go through a flexible working request
  • Access to our Helpline where our advisers can assist you with your family friendly legislation related queries.
     

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Dismissal

Job interview_17953A dismissal occurs when an employer terminates the employee's contract. An employee must be given at least the notice stated in their contract or the statutory minimum notice period, whichever is longer. There are some situations where you can be dismissed without notice - e.g. for gross misconduct offence.

If an employee has at least two years continuous service, they have the right to challenge the decision and claim unfair dismissal. In order to defend a claim, an employer would have to a) have a fair reason to dismissal and b) follow a fair procedure.

Legally there are 5 fair reasons to dismiss:

  • Misconduct
  • Capability
  • Redundancy
  • Illegality
  • Some other substantial reason

An employee with over two years’ service (or if pregnant) is entitled to written reasons for their dismissal.
 

How can NFU Employment Service help your business with Dismissal:

  • Online Manual Chapters on Unfair Dismissal, Redundancy and Capability
  • Staff Handbook policies on Redundancy, Capability
  • Template Letters on dealing with Redundancy, Misconduct and Capability dismissal
  • Access to our Helpline where our advisers can assist you with your dismissal queries.
     

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