Here you will find all the latest news from the SCE team. In this section we will feature news about what we have been up to, recent mentions in the press, information about the work we do in the community and lots more.

Monthly Archive September 2014

Antenatal rights for expectant fathers and partners

For decades women have had the right to take paid time off from work to attend antenatal appointments, and on the 1 October 2014 this right is going to be extended to expectant fathers and partners by virtue of the new Children and Families Act 2014 (though there is not going to be a corresponding right for this time to be paid).

However, while expectant mothers usually attend around 10 antenatal appointments, the new law only allows expectant fathers and partners to attend up to two appointments for a maximum of 6.5 hours each. Though, employers can use their discretion and allow employees more than the statutory periods off.

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Employer deductions from wages must be clearly itemised

Checking the fine print on a wage slip is always a good idea. Ambiguous acronyms that are only truly understood by the payroll department often abound and if one does not know what these mean, in particular as relates to deductions from said pay packet, then how can one be certain that these deductions are correct and lawful?

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Claimant’s costs can be claimed despite having insurance in place

Many readers may be unaware of the general methods by which an employment tribunal case might be funded against an employer, something which ultimately affects how the case might proceed for both parties.

One of the main funding options available to would be claimants is via their house contents insurance (should they have such), which often has a clause confirming that the insured has legal expenses cover for employment disputes. The average indemnity limit is £50,000 – a legal ‘war chest’ big enough to cover all but the most complex and elaborate of claims.

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Why you should have clear employment contract terms

“You should have got that in writing”.

The above often belated advice is normally punctuated by the distinct sound of the recipient ‘kicking themselves’ for not getting an agreement from an employer expressly written out.

While the written contract is often the definitive word on the employer/employee relationship, agreements can still be varied by way of verbal assurances and dependent on how the contract was drafted there can sometimes be scope for argument as to the interpretation of a specific clause.

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