What's coming for HR in 2022?

We’ve outlined below the key measures which are expected in the coming months.

National minimum / living wage 

We know that this will be changing in April, and employers will need to ensure they are aware of important birthdays (as staff may move within pay bands) and the new rates so the changes can be implemented. The 2022 rates will be: 

  • 23+ year olds = £9.50
  • 21-22 year olds = £9.18
  • 18-20 year olds = £6.83
  • 16-17 year-olds = £4.81
  • Apprentices = £4.81.

Similarly, from 3 April 2022, statutory maternity, paternity, adoption, shared parental, and parental bereavement pay will increase from £151.97 per week to £156.66 per week.

Statutory sick pay will also increase on 6 April from £96.35 per week to £99.35 per week. The lower earnings limit for eligibility for these payments is also increasing from £120 to £123 per week, for the first time in two years.

Holidays

To celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, the late May bank holiday, which normally would have fallen on 30 May 2022, will move to Thursday 2 June 2022, and there will be an additional bank holiday on Friday 3 June 2022.  As some may recall for the royal wedding, contracts will need to be checked carefully to understand what the obligation to employees is; there might not be the automatic right to the additional day, or to time off on fixed bank holidays. 

Covid

Covid will still be around in 2022 but the rollout of vaccinations has put organisations in a much better position. Whilst many organisations will not be required by law to have fully vaccinated workers, to minimise the disruption of Covid, and for the health and safety of staff and customers, encouraging staff to become fully vaccinated, and having boosters, is a move well worth taking.  

Family friendly rights

An Employment Bill was announced in 2019 and is expected to be passed in 2022. This includes the introduction of statutory neonatal leave and pay for parents of babies requiring neonatal care, and the extension of the redundancy protection period for employees on maternity leave to up to six months after they return to work. 

The government has also confirmed the introduction of carer’s leave as a new statutory right. This will entitle employees with caring responsibilities to take up to one week of unpaid leave per year from day one. 

Third party harassment 

Changes to harassment laws are expected in 2022, including an extension to the time period employees have for raising tribunal claims and enhanced protection against harassment from third parties, such as clients, customers and members of the public. Training for employees will need to be updated on this point, as will organisational policies.

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