Financial & Legal News

INSIGHT: Zero Hours Workers Free From Exclusivity Clauses

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A ban on exclusivity clauses in zero-hours contracts is set to benefit workers in Oldham, according to a leading employment law expert.

The provision, part of the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015, was introduced today (26 May) and means that staff on flexible employment agreements can work for more than one company without fear of being sacked or disciplined.

Susan Mayall, head of employment at Pearson, welcomed the new measure but warned that businesses will now need to review their current flexible labour arrangements.

Susan commented: “This is great news for employees and will bring financial security to many, offering greater control over their hours and income when there is no guarantee of work.

“While exclusivity clauses are not widely used, employers should review all zero-hours contracts to ascertain whether they’re included and the reasons why. If exclusivity clauses are present employees should be informed that they will no longer be enforced.

“Businesses that did rely on exclusivity clauses should consider alternatives such as permanent employment contracts with specified working hours, fixed-term contracts or agency worker arrangements during busy periods.”

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) estimated that companies in the UK used 1.8 million zero-hours contracts in August 2014.

For more information about zero-hours contracts and how the ban on exclusivity clauses might affect your business, please call Susan Mayall on 0161 822 0677 or email susan.mayall@pearsonlegal.co.uk.

Please note that the information and opinions contained in this article are not intended to be comprehensive, nor to provide legal advice. No responsibility for its accuracy or correctness is assumed by Pearson Solicitors and Financial Advisers Ltd or any of its members or employees. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking, or refraining from taking, any action as a result of this article.

This blog was posted some time ago and its contents may now be out of date. For the latest legal position relating to these issues, get in touch with the author - or make an enquiry now.

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