According to the government’s latest guidance for employers and businesses on coronavirus (COVID-19), businesses and workplaces are required to encourage their employees to work from home wherever possible.
As employers owe a duty of care to safeguard their employees’ health and safety, employers should consider implementing a default working from home policy in a fair and consistent manner throughout their workplace.
Any employer who refuses to allow employees to work from home, against the advice of the government and Public Health England, is at considerable risk of facing a strong legal claim.
What should an employer being doing during COVID-19?
- Stay up to date with the government advice on coronavirus;
- Take further precautions to protect vulnerable employees such as those who are pregnant, aged 60 or over or who have underlying health conditions;
- Try to avoid attendance in the office as much as possible and make reasonable adjustments for employees to work from home including holding meetings remotely;
- Have a clear sickness policy in place and make all employees aware of the same;
- Ensure you have records for all your staff’s emergency contact details;
- Look out for symptoms of coronavirus amongst your staff, prioritising their well being and that of other employees they will be interacting with; and
- Ensure there are clean places to enable your staff to wash their hands with hot water and soap.
Employment Law Advice for Employers and Businesses
Our UK Employment Solicitors provide specialist advice during the uncertainty brought about by the coronavirus to businesses, managers and employers on:
- General advice on your employment needs – drafting contracts of employment, policies, procedures & company handbook; advice on amending terms of employment;
- Employment rights;
- Insolvency situations;
- Negotiating sensitive grievance or discrimination claims; and
- Bringing and defending complex and high value Employment Tribunal cases – Our Employment team provide a comprehensive and bespoke service bringing, managing or defending any employment related claim.
Book an Initial Consultation with an Employment Lawyer
If you are an employer, senior executive, or HR professional and require advice on any aspect of UK Employment law, get in touch so our employment team can assess the legal merits of your case and provide you or your business with bespoke UK employment legal advice and the impact that COVID-19 may have upon your business.
Please note that your legal rights may be subject to limitation and thereby irreversibly time-barred if you fail to take legal action or defend a claim in time, in particular for Employment Tribunal and Court proceedings. You are strongly advised to seek legal advice prior to taking any steps in the employment tribunal or court procedural process. Do not delay in seeking legal advice.