Be Aware - June 2016
General Data Protection Regulation to apply from May 2018
The General Data Protection Regulation (GPDR) is a new regulation by which the European Commission intends to strengthen and unify data protection for individuals within the European Union
We can report that the GDPR will replace the current Data Protection Directive (95/46/EC) and apply in all member states from 25 May 2018, two years from its entry into force on 24 May 2016.
Businesses now have a fixed deadline for mandatory compliance with the official GDPR text. Preparation should be underway for its application, particularly in the light of hugely increased monetary penalties for breaches and other new requirements.
We will report further in due course on the necessary steps which businesses need to take before May 2018.
National Minimum Wage: What Counts?
Employers in the motor industry will be aware from recent RMI updates that the National Minimum Wage Regulations have recently been updated and strengthened. The new Regulations came into force in April 2016 and Regulation 2 increases the financial penalties payable by employers who underpay the National Minimum Wage from 100% to 200% of the underpayment due to each worker.
Many employers however remain, understandably, confused at the complex rules as to what does and does not count towards NMW. THE RMI has produced a brief guide. If you have a specific query then we suggest you seek advice from the RMI legal helpline.
Who is afraid of the CMA?
As we all know the Consumer Rights Act 2015 (CRA) became Law on the 1 October 2015 and replaced previous Consumer Law and introduced a tiered remedy system for consumers. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) now has responsibility for overseeing Consumer Law and replaces the OFT.
With greater enforcement powers than the OFT, the CMA has been tackling issues such as price comparison websites, but it will probably not be too long before it focuses its attention on the Motor Industry.
It is worth looking at the CMA website from time to time as this can give an idea of where their focus for investigation currently is. We will of course keep you updated on developments.
Redundancy Procedure for a Pool of Employees
“I have six technicians in the workshop but due to a drop in business, I have calculated that I can manage with four, can I choose which two technicians to remove? They have all been employed for several years but some are more problematic than others”
Given you are overstaffed you would be looking at a redundancy situation. You are likely to be able to reduce the number of staff employed provided a fair and reasonable process is followed. However, be warned. Due to their length of service, i.e. having more than two years’ continuity of employment, they all have employment law protection meaning if you simply choose without any objective criteria, it could risk a claim for unfair dismissal from the two who are dismissed.
The RMI has produced a brief guide to a fair redundancy process.
Automatic Pension Enrolment - Successfully declaring your compliance
For those of you who are reaching your staging date, remember that you have to submit your Declaration of Compliance so that The Pensions Regulator know that you are meeting your legal duties.
Some employers wrongly assume that their business adviser is doing this for them. Avoid a fine by making sure you’re clear who is completing what automatic enrolment task and which services.
This advice is general in nature and it will need to be tailored to any one particular situation. As an RMI member you have access to the RMI legal advice line, as well as a number of industry experts for your assistance. Should you find yourself in the situation above, please call the member helpline on 0845 305 4230 at any stage for advice and assistance.