Brexit and employment law – what does the future hold?
The European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020 was finally passed on 23 January 2020. This law implements the withdrawal agreement, setting out the terms for leaving the EU on 31 January 2020.
An earlier version contained provisions to safeguard workers’ rights that come from EU law. Although these provisions, including a duty to issue a ‘non-regression statement’ for future employment laws, did not go so far as to enshrine these rights post-Brexit, some see their removal as symbolic. In the Queen’s Speech in December 2019, the government announced its intention to introduce a new employment bill. Much of this would continue bringing into force changes recommended in a review of rights of workers in the gig economy.
Many long-established workers’ and employees’ rights derive from European law. These include regulations on working time and protection of employment rights on the transfer of a business. Other significant areas of employment law, such as unfair dismissal, are mostly homegrown.
During the transition period, which runs until the end of 2020, current employment law, including laws derived from EU law, will continue to apply.
This article is for general information only and does not constitute legal or professional advice. Please note that the law may have changed since this article was published.