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Key dates and employment update: Spring 2022

Our employment solicitor, Lisa Aitken sets out below some of the key dates and changes that employers should be aware of from April 2022.

Closure of the Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) rebate scheme: From the 17th March 2022, employers are no longer able to claim back SSP for coronavirus related absences or periods of self-isolation.  The usual SSP rules now apply with employees being entitled to SSP from the fourth qualifying day of absence.

1st April 2022 – Increases in the national minimum wage:

The following rates will apply:

  • increase in the national living wage for workers aged 23 or over from £8.91 to £9.50 per hour;
  • increase in the national minimum wage for workers aged at least 21 but under 23 from £8.36 to £9.18 per hour;
  • increase in the national minimum wage for workers aged at least 18 but under 21 from £6.56 to £6.83 per hour;
  • increase in the national minimum wage for workers aged 16 to 17 from £4.62 to £4.81 per hour;
  • increase in the apprentice rate from £4.30 to £4.81 per hour; and
  • increase in the accommodation offset from £8.36 to £8.70 per day.

3rd April 2022 – Increase in statutory family related pay - Statutory maternity, paternity, adoption, shared parental and parental bereavement pay will increase from £151.97 to £156.66 per week.

3rd April  2022 – Statutory Sick Pay – this will increase to £99.35 per week.

6th April 2022 – Statutory Redundancy payment:  The maximum amount of a week’s pay for the purpose of calculating a statutory redundancy payment increases from £544 to £571.

6th April 2022 – National Insurance contributions – lower earnings limit – The lower earnings limit for calculating primary Class 1 national insurance contributions increases from £120 to £123 per week.

6th April 2022 – National Insurance – health and social care levy – National insurance contributions will increase by 1.25% from 6th April 2022 to 4th April 2023. This extra tax will be spent on the NHS and social care in the UK.

3 June – Queen’s Platinum Jubilee - Consideration should be given as to whether the Platinum Jubilee bank holiday (Friday 3rd June) will be taken out of an employee’s annual holiday allowance or whether employees are contractually entitled to take this extra day off.

17 June - Disability
The Government’s response to its consultation on disability workforce reporting is due.

30th September 2022 – Adjusted right to work check measures – The adjusted measures used during the pandemic -  carrying out right to work checks by video call and accepting scans and photos of documents rather than originals can continue until 30th September 2022.

Health and Safety Protection – Health and safety laws have been extended to protect workers, not just employees.

Extending Pregnancy protection from redundancy: An employee at risk of redundancy while on maternity, adoption or shared parental leave ahs the right to be offered any suitable vacancy that is available.

The government is proposing to extend this protection to:

  • pregnant employees, once they have told their employer of their pregnancy
  • employees returning from maternity or adoption leave within the previous six months
  • parents returning from shared parental leave (details still to be worked out)

The Government has said this legislation will be brought forward when Parliamentary time allows.

Expected 2023 – Neonatal leave and pay – The Good work plan contained a commitment to introduce extra statutory leave and pay for all parents of premature babies needing specialist care in a neonatal unit.  To avoid parents having to choose between returning to work and taking care of their newborn, the government confirmed its intention to introduce 12 weeks’ paid leave for parents.  Although details on how this will work are yet to be released, it is expected that the leave will be taken after maternity/paternity leave and paid at the statutory rate for those employees with 26 weeks’ service.

How we can help…

If you are an employer or an employee and have any queries in relation to employment law and the changes now in force, please contact Lisa Aitken, our employment specialist on 01926 491181 or email:

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