Several key changes to UK employment rights  will come into effect in April 2024. By way of brief summary, the key changes for employers to be aware of, and those that will require immediate attention to ensure legally compliant and up-to-date HR policies and practices in the UK, include the following:

Changes to the flexible working regime and family friendly changes

On 6 April 2024, a number of changes to the flexible working regime and other family friendly rights will come into effect, including:

  • Flexible working to be made a “day one” right and a shorter period for employers to respond to requests (among other changes).
  • A new right to unpaid carer’s leave will come into force for employees with caring responsibilities.
  • Redundancy protection will be extended for pregnant employees and employees returning from maternity, adoption or shared parental leave.
  • Changes will be made to the way statutory paternity leave is exercised.
  • Increase to unfair dismissal compensation from 6 April 2024

  • Maximum compensatory award for unfair dismissal: £115,115 (previously £105,707).

Increase to statutory redundancy pay from 6 April 2024

  • Maximum amount of a week’s pay for calculating statutory redundancy pay (among other things) will increase to £700 per week (previously £643).
  • Maximum statutory redundancy payment will increase from £19,290 to £21,000.

Holiday changes for leave years starting on or after 1 April 2024

  • Providing a method of holiday accrual for irregular-hours and part-year workers, based on 12.07% of the hours worked in the previous pay period. For workers on sick leave or other family-related leave, accrual will be based on average working hours over a 52-week reference period.
  • Permitting rolled-up holiday pay for irregular hours and part-year workers.

Increase to statutory sick pay (“SSP”) applies from 6 April 2024

  • The SSP rate will increase to £116.75 (previously £109.40).

Increase to statutory maternity, paternity, adoption and shared parental pay from 6 April 2024

  • The prescribed rate will increase to £184.03 (previously £172.48)
  • Increase to National Minimum Wage apply from 1 April 2024
  • The Government has announced the rates of the National Living Wage (NLW) and National Minimum Wage (NMW). An overview of the rates that will apply from 1 April 2024 are as follows:
 NMW RateIncrease in pence% increase
21 and over (NLW)£   11.44£     1.029.8%
18-20 year old rate£     8.60£     1.1114.8%
16-17 year old rate£     6.40£     1.1221.2%
Apprentice rate£     6.40£     1.1221.2%
Accommodation offset£     9.99£     0.899.8%

Next steps

Review existing policies and seek assistance from counsel to update or create new policies.