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Are your terms and conditions ‘predictable’?

We previously reported on the Workers (Predictable Terms and Conditions) Bill which has been working its way through Parliament over the past few months.  It has now received Royal Assent and is expected to come into force in around a year.  Following consultation, Acas will produce a relevant code of practice to provide guidance on making and handling requests.

Workers (Predictable Terms and Conditions) Act 2023 (‘the Predictable Terms Act’)

The Predictable Terms Act will amend the Employment Rights Act 1996 to give workers and agency workers the right to request a predictable work pattern where:

  • There is a lack of predictability over any part of their work pattern (this includes fixed-term contracts of 12 months or less).
  • The change relates to their work pattern.
  • Their purpose in applying for the change is to get a more predictable work pattern.

Certain rules will apply as follows:

  • There will be a minimum service requirement to make an application, the length of which is yet to be determined (it is expected to be 26 weeks’ service).
  • A worker will be able to make up to two applications in a 12-month period.
  • Applications may be rejected on certain statutory grounds.

The right will be enforceable by the ability for workers to bring claims based on procedural failings by the employer and for unlawful detriment and automatic unfair dismissal.