The Protection from Redundancy (Pregnancy and Family Leave) Act 2023 (the “Act”) was enacted on 24 July 2023.
This new legislation empowers the Government to bolster redundancy protections for pregnant workers and new parents rejoining the workforce.
What does the Act contain?
Additionally, the Act revises portions of the Employment Rights Act 1996, extending redundancy safeguards to phases during or post maternity leave, adoption leave, and shared parental leave.
There’s a proposal to stretch the “protected period” from when an employee informs their employer of the pregnancy to six months post returning from maternity leave. This proposition’s confirmation awaits the forthcoming secondary legislation.
What is New?
While pre-existing laws dictate:
The essence of section 10 of the Maternity and Parental Leave Regulations 1999 combined with section 99 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 already prioritises employees on maternity leave.
The salient alteration is the reinforced implication for employers to be meticulous in ensuring appropriate job alternatives are presented to employees during or post these leave durations, should suitable roles exist.
The timetable for these changes remains undisclosed. Consequently, we stand by for subsequent details about the exact durations covered by these enhanced redundancy protections.