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Jonathan James Tuck

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Jonathan Tuck is a partner in the Baker McKenzie employment department. Jonathan joined the Firm in June 2012 and completed secondments at Google between March and July 2015 and British Airways between July 2015 and January 2016.

The UK’s political upheaval and fiscal policy changes are much-publicized. But where do we stand on recently proposed changes to employment law as Rishi Sunak starts his premiership? One of the Truss government’s tax proposals – repealing IR35 changes – might have had a significant effect on contractor workforce planning. However, this was abandoned and the current IR35 rules will remain. Conversely, for the time being, the government is pursuing its plans to limit the disruption caused by strike action in the transport sector. Similarly, the removal of the cap on bankers’ bonuses is still on the agenda. Also on the horizon is the potentially ground-changing proposal to scrap all retained EU law, which in theory could include TUPE.

Modern slavery is an umbrella term for practices which share a common element of force or coercion. The International Labor Organization estimated that, globally, 40.3 million people were working in conditions which could be described as modern slavery in 2016. As a result of the increasingly international reach of modern slavery legislation, many companies with global footprints are modifying their organization to ensure compliance across their business, for example by preparing modern slavery statements which tick off compliance requirements in several jurisdictions. Legislative change is expected in the UK, Canada, and under the EU’s proposed Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence directive.

The Baker McKenzie London Employment team is delighted to welcome you back to our Industrial Action webinar miniseries with our third and final episode. Episode three breaks down some of the key contingency planning considerations for companies that are experiencing a sustained spell of industrial action, including practices to help keep the business moving, legal risks that can occur during strike action, and steps you should take, such as a proactive communications strategy, to mitigate and avoid these risks.

The Baker McKenzie London Employment team is delighted to welcome you back to our Industrial Action webinar miniseries with episode two, where we explore what businesses should do when they receive a ballot notice and the potential legal challenges and pitfalls that often arise. The contents of the ballot notice, ballot paper and industrial action notice are often key areas of dispute when there are challenges to the industrial action process, and are key considerations when organizations are considering injunctive relief.

The Baker McKenzie London Employment team is delighted to share episode one of our new virtual miniseries, which focuses on the various challenges that organisations are likely to need to navigate when facing industrial action. A number of the factors and issues that are relevant to the current spate of trade disputes and industrial unrest – rising energy prices, the cost of living crisis, high rates of inflation – are not expected to disappear or resolve themselves overnight. As such, industrial action, or at least threats of industrial action, is expected to increase in prevalence across different industries and organisations over the coming months.

Following the government’s recent announcement, Parliament has approved the removal of the prohibition on businesses using temporary workers to cover staff taking part in industrial action and increased the maximum amount of damages that a court can award against a trade union for unlawful strike action. These changes became effective on 21 July 2022.

The government has announced that it is proposing to make changes to trade union law that will remove the current prohibition on businesses using temporary workers to cover staff taking part in industrial action. It has also announced that it plans to quadruple the maximum amount of damages that a court can award against a trade union for unlawful strike action from GBP 250,000 to GBP 1 million. These changes will need to be approved by Parliament.

The Employment Appeal Tribunal had upheld a decision of the employment tribunal that two companies within the same group had made unlawful inducements relating to collective bargaining under section 145B of the Trade Unions and Labour Relations (“Consolidation”) Act when it made direct offers of pay to its employees after it reached an impasse in negotiations with the recognised trade union. Although the tribunal’s decision pre-dated the Supreme Court’s decision in Kostal v. Dunkley, its findings were “presciently, so close in language to the test enunciated by the Supreme Court” that its conclusion was entirely consistent with the correct legal test as set out in Kostal.

In an article published for ELA briefing, Jon Tuck and Richard Cook discuss the implications of the Court of Appeal’s decision in Mercer v Alternative Future Group, considering whether workers participating in protected industrial action are protected from action short of dismissal under the Trade Unions and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992.