EU Directive on Transparent and Predictable Working Conditions signed into law
On 16 December 2022, the Government announced the approval of EU Directive on Transparent and Predictable Working Conditions, which includes a range of minimum requirements to protect workers. This brings the Directive into national law in Ireland. The European Union (Transparent and Predictable Working Conditions) Regulations 2022, S.I. 686/2002 amends a number of pieces of employment legislation which introduces new obligations for employers. We set out the main changes affecting employers.
Some of the main changes affecting employers are set out below:
Written statement of terms of employment to be furnished within one month (previously two):
Under the Terms of Employment Act 1994 employers are obliged to issue employees with a written statement of certain terms of employment. This previously had to be provided within two months of commencement, but the Regulations have reduced this time limit to one month and have introduced additional information which must be included in the Written Statement:
- Training, if any, the employer may provide;
- In the case of a temporary agency worker, the identity of the end-user;
- Additional information for employees whose work patterns are mostly or entirely unpredictable including details of the reference hours and days within which the employee may be required to work, the number of guaranteed paid hours, remuneration for work performed in addition to those hours, and the minimum notice period before the start of a work assignment;
Additional information to be provided within the Day 5 Statement:
The Regulations require that the following additional terms be included in the Day 5 Statement:
- the place of work or, where there is no main place of work, a statement specifying that the employee is employed at various places or is free to determine his or her place of work or to work at various places;
- the title, grade, nature, or category of work for which the employee is employed, or a brief specification or description of the work;
- the date of commencement of the employee’s contract of employment;
- any terms or conditions relating to hours of work (including overtime);
- where a probationary period applies, its duration and conditions.
Notification of changes
The Regulations amend section 5 of the Terms of Employment Act 1984 such that whenever a change is made to any of the particulars of the Written Statement or the Day 5 Statement, the employee must be notified in writing of the nature and date of the change no later than on the day of the change. Previously, an employer had one month to notify employees of such changes.
The Regulations provide that the probationary period for private sector employees can be extended on an exceptional basis in the interests of the employee for a maximum of 12 months.
Where an employee has been absent from work due to maternity leave, adoptive leave, parental leave, paternity leave, carer’s leave, parent’s leave, statutory sick leave or another form of statutory protective leave during the probationary period, the employer can suspend the probationary period for the duration of the employee’s absence.
In cases where on the commencement of the Regulations, on 16 December 2022, an employee in the private sector has already entered into a contract of employment which:
- has a probationary period that exceeds 6 months, and
- the employee has completed at least 6 months of their probationary period;
the probation period will expire on either the date on which the probation period was due to expire or the 1 February 2023, whichever is the earlier.
Where an employer is required to provide mandatory training either by law or by a collective agreement, it shall be provided free of charge, count as working time and where feasible take place during working hours.
The Regulations provide that employers cannot prohibit employees from taking up employment with another employer outside of their work schedule or subject the employee to adverse treatment for engaging in such parallel employment. An employer can however restrict the employee from taking up parallel employment where the restriction is proportionate and based on objective grounds i.e., health and safety.
Should you require any further advice, you can contact Fiona Mulligan, HR Executive, on (01) 605 1557 or email@example.com for further information on any of the above.