Basic Employment Conditions

Employment Contract

It’s important that small business owners are aware of the legislation relating to basic employment conditions when taking on new staff.

Offers of employment

Verbal offers of employment are legally binding

It’s against the law to request information regarding an applicant’s health, sickness record or disability before making an offer.

You should make reasonable adjustments to the recruitment and selection process for any employees declaring a disability.

Employment offers can be subject to any pre-employment checks, such as:

  • References
  • Medicals
  • Qualifications
  • Professional memberships
  • DBS checks
  • The right of applicants to work in the UK

It is strongly advised that offers of employment, including pre-employment clauses which may result in an offer being withdrawn, are put in writing to the prospective employee.

Minimum wage

From 1 April 2021

  • For employees of 25 years’ and over£8.92 per hour
  • For employees 21 – 24 years’ – £8.36 per hour
  • For employees 18-20 years’ – £6.56 per hour
  • For employees under 18 years’ old outside compulsory school- £4.62
  • For apprentices – £4.30 per hour

Holiday entitlements

UK statutory holiday entitlements are as follows:

  • Full-time employees are entitled to a minimum of 5.6 working weeks (28 days) per annum. This can include the 8 public holidays. Holiday entitlements are pro-rata for part-time staff.
  • Casual/temporary workers and employees on zero-hours contracts are also entitled to pro-rata holiday leave for each hour worked up to the full-time equivalent.
  • Part-time employees are also entitled to receive additional pro-rata holiday for each hour of paid overtime received up to the full-time equivalent.
  • If employees are required to work on a public holiday they must receive the statutory compensation of paid time AND time off in lieu.

You can use the Government’s holiday leave calculator to calculate holiday entitlement .

Sick pay entitlements – normal sickness

As at April 2021 the rate for statutory sick pay (SSP) is £96.35 per week for up to 28 weeks.

SSP is paid for the days an employee normally works, known as “qualifying days”.

SSP is payable when the employee has been off sick for at least 4 working days, starting from the 4th day of absence (including non-working days). The 1st 3 days of sickness absence are unpaid.

GP Fit Notes are required to cover sickness from the 8thconsecutive day of absence.

You can use the Government’s

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