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On 16 May 2024, the government launched a consultation concerning TUPE and European Works Councils (EWCs). There are three proposals under consultation: (1) Overturn the concept of split assignment in a TUPE transfer (where an employee’s contract of employment could be split between two transferees). (2) Confirm that TUPE only covers employees, not workers. (3) Repeal the remaining post-Brexit EWC legislation, which will likely see the end of any statutory obligations to maintain an EWC in the UK.

As the UK’s Parliament has now been dissolved until the general election on 4 July 2024, most draft legislation will no longer proceed. However, some unfinished business is passed through agreement between the government and the opposition parties in what is known as the “wash up” process. These include laws on non-disclosure clauses, fair allocation of tips, additional paternity leave where the mother (or primary adopter) of a child dies, and the statutory code on fire and rehire.

Discussion of AI adoption in the workplace seems to have reached fever pitch in recent months – with good reason. In this article for IEL, we summarize the current legal framework and regulatory attitudes, and venture our insights into what employers can realistically do now to mitigate legal risk and put them in the best position with respect to future developments.

In an article published for Law360, Jon Tuck, Richard Cook, and Megan Clarkson Bowly discuss the implications of the Supreme Court’s decision in Mercer v. Alternative Futures Group, considering whether workers participating in industrial action are protected from action short of dismissal under the Trade Unions and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992.

The Takeover Panel has published a revised version of Practice Statement 31 dealing with the application of various rules in the context of a private sale process (PSP) run by a target company or major shareholder (as well as in the context of a formal sale process or strategic review, as were previously covered). The Panel has recognized that there are circumstances where a target company is reluctant to pursue a formal sale process and that where it instead pursues a PSP, some of the dispensations applicable to a formal sales process should apply in a similar way. The amended practice statement is available on the Panel’s website and has immediate effect.

The Supreme Court has ruled that section 146 of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992 (TULRCA) which does not prevent employers from taking action short of dismissal in response to striking employees is incompatible with Article 11 of the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR). Although the declaration of incompatibility does not affect the validity or operation of section 146, it will put pressure on the government to legislate to correct the position, and employers are likely to be mindful of the decision when considering action short of dismissal in response to industrial action. Detriments for participation in industrial action, such as removing discretionary benefits from those who take part, currently remain lawful, so long as the detriments in question aren’t so severe as to constitute a constructive dismissal.

The FCA’s Sustainability Disclosure Requirements (SDR) regime is the UK’s flagship ESG regime, set to apply from May 2024 onwards. The SDR is primarily a product labelling regime which is accompanied by entity-level disclosure requirements, new anti-greenwashing guidance and ESG marketing requirements.
This implementation guide provides a practical overview of the regime and key points for firms to consider when launching an SDR labelled fund and completing entity-level disclosures.

Greenwashing refers to the practice of making exaggerated, misleading or unsubstantiated claims in relation to the sustainability credentials of financial products and services. The risk of greenwashing claims has risen significantly in recent years, in tandem with investor demand for more sustainable investment products. This has been evidenced not only by well-publicized enforcement action both in Europe and the UK, but also by a flurry of recent claims by NGOs against financial institutions.