Brexit – What now for the SME employer?

Despite the uncertainty over Brexit, the UK’s employment lawyers and workplace related organisations, like the CIPD, are unanimous in their view that, whatever the business community’s anxieties are at the moment, they do not need to be concerned that there is going to be any radical change to employment laws, even in a post EU world.

The reasons for this view in the short term are that the UK will remain part of the EU unless and until the formal exit mechanism under Article 50 is invoked.   That will not be until the Conservative Party has chosen a new Prime Minister in the autumn.

Assuming that the new leader invokes Article 50 (and in this crazy post-referendum political storm, that is just an assumption), there will be at least 2 years and maybe more of negotiations before the UK finally leaves.

After Brexit, there will be more than enough for the Government at the time to be getting on with, not least with managing the economy.  It will not want to place an overwhelming burden on employers by rushing through a raft of new laws.

But by repealing the European Communities Act 1972, the legal consequence is that any piece of EU derived legislation that is not enshrined into domestic law under its own Act of Parliament will no longer be in force.

Whereas, for example, the EU’s Equal Treatment Directive, which manifests itself in our domestic law under the Equality Act 2010, will remain unaffected, the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 (“TUPE”), does not yet have an Act protecting it and will not automatically survive.

This will provide some opportunity for the Government to recast some secondary legislation like the Agency Workers Regulations, but the vast majority will survive Brexit intact.  Think evolution not revolution.

If you have any concerns about Brexit and what it means for your business or family please call Morrisons Solicitors on 020 8971 1024, email [email protected]


Although correct at the time of publication, the contents of this newsletter/blog are intended for general information purposes only and shall not be deemed to be, or constitute, legal advice. We cannot accept responsibility for any loss as a result of acts or omissions taken in respect of this article. Please contact us for the latest legal position.

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