January 31, 2012

Legal Issues – Increase in Tribunal Award Limits

From 1 February 2012, the maximum limit on a week’s pay for the purposes of certain Tribunal awards (including statutory redundancy pay) increases from £400 to £430. In addition, the cap on compensatory awards made in unfair dismissal claims will increase from £68,400 to £72,300 for dismissals which take place on or after that date.

Increase in unfair dismissal qualifying periods

At the end of last year, the Government announced that the one year’s service required by an employee to bring an unfair dismissal claim was to be increased to two years. It has now announced that the two year rule will only apply to employees who start employment on or after 6 April 2012. Those employees who are in employment prior to that date will, as currently, need only one year’s service to acquire the right to claim unfair dismissal.

Increase in parental leave deferred

Changes to the right to parental leave, which include increasing the amount of leave available from 3 months to 4 months, have been deferred until 2013. The Government has decided that the changes will be introduced as part of its Modern Workplaces developments, which will see further changes to flexible working rights and the Working Time Regulations 1998. These latter changes are expected by 2015.

For further details of these developments please contact Alan Sutherland, Head of Employment Law at Navigator at



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