Although the current employment market is such that many people feel lucky to have a job, it does not mean that an employer is allowed to take advantage of an employee. Every employee has a number of employment rights that they are entitled to. An employee will have their statutory rights, which everyone is entitled to by law and then they will have a contract of employment. No matter what is contained within the contract of employment, it is not possible to take away what is provided to people by statutory law.
An example of this would be an employment contract which states that people in full-time employment are entitled to 14 days of paid holiday a year. However, the statutory law for people in full-time employment is that they are entitled to 28 days paid holiday a year. In this regard, the statutory law is the one that should be followed and any employee that is not provided with their statutory amount of paid holidays will have cause for complaint. If the contract of employment provides a greater level of benefits than statutory law, the contract of employment will take precedent. In brief, the statutory contract provides the minimum benefits that people will be entitled to receive.
Restrictive Covenants in Employment Contracts
Statutory laws are those based on laws which have been passed by Parliament and it is important to note that virtually every worker in the UK is entitled to these employment statutory rights, although there are some exceptions. People working through an agency or work freelance are not provided with the same statutory rights but they are governed by other parts of the law. People in this area are protected by the national minimum wage, working time limits, health and safety regulations and other factors.
Not everyone is entitled to statutory rights
People who work outside of the UK are not covered by statutory rights, the armed forces and police service are not covered by statutory rights, fishermen and seamen are not covered while doctors who are classed as trainees are not permitted to take paid holidays. Trainee doctors also have a higher limit for their working week, 58 hours as opposed to 48 hours.
Some of the rights that employees have are worth noting because they may apply to you and they could have implications at a later date. Employees have the right to receive a written statement of their stated terms of employment and this should be received within two months of beginning employment with a company. Employees are also entitled to receive a pay slip with itemised elements on it. Employees are also entitled to receive at least the national minimum wage and they have to right not to have any illegal deductions taken from their pay.
Trade union representation is covered
Another issue that matters to a number of employees relates to trade unions. While many works do not promote or encourage the presence of trade unions, employees have the right to take time off from their work to engage in trade union activities and action. There is nothing to state that this time has to be paid by the firm but the time must be allowed. Employees also have the right to have a trade union official or represent attend any grievance or disciplinary hearing alongside the employee. Any employee that takes part in an officially arranged industrial strike or action and is subsequently dismissed for that action, a finding of unfair dismissal will be applied.
If an employee has more than two years’ service for a firm and have been told that they are being made redundant, they have the right to take paid time off from their work to look for alterative employment.
Employees have the right to receive paid time away from work for ante natal care and parents are entitled to paid maternity and paternity leave. There is also the right to receive paid leave for adoption requirements and employees have the right to request flexible working conditions for any children or adults that are dependent on them. The vast majority of employees in the UK have a number of rights available to them when they are in employment.