Employment law changes due in 2024

The government has decided to make a lot of employment law changes this year, so please make sure you are aware of them!

From 1 April 2024:

National minimum wage

The new hourly rates, applicable from 1 April 2024, are as follows:

National living wage (21yrs + ): £11.44 per hour (from £10.42)
18- to 20-year-olds’ rate: £8.60 per hour (from £7.49)
16- to 17-year-olds’ rate: £6.40 per hour (from £5.28)
Apprentice rate: £6.40 per hour (from £5.28)

Rolled-up holiday pay for part-year workers and irregular-hours workers

For those of you that have been around long enough, it will feel like déjà vu. Back before October 2019, we were allowed to pay out zero hours/casual and part year workers their holiday every month. The way we did that was by multiplying the hours worked that month by 12.07% to get the holiday hours to be paid at their normal rate of pay. For leave years from 1 April 2024, we will have gone in a huge circle, and you can now legally go back to using 12.07%.

The rolled-up part of this holiday pay is that they get paid for their holiday every month, not when they take holiday. Rolled-up holiday pay had been illegal in the UK for many years, but has now been reintroduced for zero-hours, casual, and part-year workers.

The holiday does have to be clearly shown on the pay slip so that the workers can see when and how much has been paid. You can use this holiday payment method for new staff from 1 April. For existing staff, please check their contracts to see if other provisions apply.


From 6 April 2024

Flexible working

All employees will be able to request flexible working from their first day of employment. There will no longer be a 26-week qualifying period. There is a right to request, not to have. You now need to have a meeting with anyone making a request before you make any decisions. There are legitimate business reasons for you to reject the request.

Paternity Leave

This can now be taken any time in the 52 weeks following the birth of the child.

Carer’s Leave

Employees will be able to take up to one week of unpaid leave per year to provide, or arrange, care for a dependant with a long-term care need. The leave does not have to be taken all in one go and the minimum period to take is half a day. Similar to holidays, at least twice as much notice has to be given by the carer as they are requesting, subject to a minimum of three days. For example, if one week is requested, then at least two weeks of notice must be given. Employers are able to postpone the leave for up to one month if their business will be unduly disrupted.

Redundancy and pregnancy/maternity

The existing regulations will extend so that if an employer is considering redundancies, steps should be taken to prioritise pregnant staff/those on maternity remaining in work before others, including suitable alternative roles.

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