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6 April Employment Law Changes Countdown – What employers need to know

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With the new financial year right around the corner, the Employment Law Team thought it pressing to remind businesses and employers of the key changes in the workplace and the several new employment laws coming into force on 6 April 2024.

It is important to ensure management are aware of these changes and that your policies and procedures are amended accordingly.

We will be reminding you over the next 4 days this week of these significant changes, starting with the Flexible Working Amendment Regulations 2023.

Flexible Working Amendment Regulations 2023

From 6 April 2024 all employees regardless of their length of service will have the right to make a flexible working request from day 1 of employment. This was previously only available to employees who had at least 26 weeks of service.

It is also anticipated that the Employment Relations (Flexible Working) Act 2023 will come into force at the same time. However, as of yet, there has been no confirmation by the Government if the additional changes are to also come into force on 6 April. Despite this, we recommend that, if you are updating your flexible working policies, you also incorporate the wider changes which consist of:

  • Increasing the number of flexible working requests that can be made in a 12-month period from 1 to 2.
  • Reducing the period of time in which an employer must respond to an employee’s flexible working request from 3 months to 2.
  • Removing the requirement for employees who are making a flexible working request to set out the effect their request would have on the business.

If you need any assistance with amending or drafting a flexible working policy that incorporates these changes, do not hesitate to contact us.

We will be back tomorrow with more information regarding another change: Carer’s Leave.

Carer’s Leave Regulations 2024

The second employment law change coming into force on 6 April 2024 is the Carer’s Leave Regulations 2024 which sets out a new statutory entitlement to unpaid carer’s leave for employees. These new regulations give employees the right to take unpaid leave for the purpose of providing or arranging care for a dependant with a long-term need. This is a day-1 right, meaning so long as the employee meets the eligibility criteria, they will be entitled to apply for up to one week of carer’s leave in any rolling 12-month period.

The leave can be taken as half-days or full days, up to a block of one week ,but employees must give written notice of their intention to take carer’s leave and their request must contain prescribed information.

Employers may be able to postpone carer’s leave requests if the leave would unduly disrupt the operation of their business. However, employers must give the appropriate notice of postponement, allow the requested leave to be taken within a month of the people which was initially requested, and be able to explain why postponement is necessary. Employers cannot otherwise refuse a request.

It is important to be aware that whilst employees taking carer’s leave lose their right to remuneration, they remain entitled to all other benefits of their employment and will have the same employment law protections as those available to employees on any other sort of family leave, such as protection from detriment due to the fact they took or sought to take carer’s leave and dismissal.

Employers and businesses should therefore ensure that current family leave policies include reference to carer’s leave.

We have a fantastic offer that businesses can benefit from – potentially saving time, money and even reputational damage as we offer a free review of contracts of employment and staff handbooks. Please contact a member of the Employment Law Team for more information.

Redundancy Protection Changes

From 6 April 2024, redundancy protections are being extended. This is another reason to stress the importance of reviewing your policies as if your business has a redundancy policy this will need to be updated to reflect this change.

The table below show the old position prior to 6 April and details what the changes are.

The current positionThe changesWhen does the change take effect?
PregnancyNone.Protection now begins at the point when an expectant mother tells their employer about their pregnancy.If the employer is informed of the pregnancy on or after 6 April 2024.
Pregnancy with baby loss before 24 weeksNone.Protection begins when the employer is told of the pregnancy and ends 2 weeks after the pregnancy ends.If the employer is informed of the pregnancy on or after 6 April 2024.
Maternity LeaveProtected from redundancy during the period of their leave.The protection begins at the start of the maternity leave and ends 18 months after the expected week of childbirth (or the child’s actual birth date if the employer is notified before the end of the maternity leave)If the maternity leave ends on or after 6 April 2024.
Adoption LeaveProtected from redundancy during the period of their leave.The protection begins from the start of the adoption leave and ends 18 months after the child is placed with the employee for adoption.If the adoption leave ends on or after 6 April 2024.
Shared parental leaveProtected from redundancy during the period of their leave.Protection begins at the start of the leave and ends 18 months after the child was born or placed with the employee for adoption – provided the employee takes 6 or more consecutive weeks of the leave.


If the employer has taken maternity or adoption leave then those protection periods apply instead of this one.

If the period of 6 consecutive weeks starts on or after 6 April 2024.


Amy Lee


Amy Lee


Amy is often the first point of contact for clients of the employment team.