Edwin Coe examines the new legislation that came into force on 31 January 2014, under the Collective Redundancies and Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) (Amendment) Regulations 2014, giving the interesting acronym CRATUPEAR (it just rolls of the tongue…)
Here we focus on two key issues:
1 – Harmonisation of terms
Following an acquisition employers often want to put all employees on the same terms and conditions. Under TUPE 2006, a variation of contract terms was void where the main reason for the variation was the transfer itself or a reason connected with the transfer which was not an economic, technical or organisational (ETO) reason. This was the case even if employees consented to the changes. This made harmonisation very difficult.
In short, under CRATUPEAR it is possible to agree variations even if they are connected to the transfer provide that there is an ETO reason and the changes are permitted under the employment contracts. This may provide extra scope for employers looking to harmonise terms.
2 – Unfair Dismissal
As the law stood before 31 January 2014 a dismissal was automatically unfair if (a) the main reason for dismissal was the transfer itself or (b) a reason connected with the transfer that was not an ETO reason.
Under the new regulations a dismissal is now automatically unfair only if the reason for dismissal is the transfer itself. Again, this is helpful for employers as it may make post-transfer dismissals more straightforward and less risky.
Please remember this is TUPE, and the amendments are not pure and definitely not simple, and do need careful examination. However the overall effect is likely to make life at least a little easier for employers.
For more information on this topic please contact the Edwin Coe Employment Law Team at http://www.edwincoe.com/services/employment.asp
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