The key legislation is the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006. Basically it states that where jobs transfer between organisations or contracts for the provision of service then the people in those jobs will transfer on the due date on their existing contracts of employment (limits on occupational pensions) with continuity of service. This is a statutory right and failure to comply will be deemed automatic unfair dismissal if a claim is brought before an employment tribunal.
David Cawthorne – Human Resources
David has spent his entire career in employment law and human resources & has advised clients from a broad range of sectors… More>
The provisions provide only limited ability to change contracts of employment, even with the agreement of the employees. Employees may object to the transfer or resign and claim unfair dismissal if the transfer involves a substantial change in their working conditions that would be to their material detriment.
Transfer-related dismissals are unfair unless they are justified by an economic, technical or organisation reason entailing a change in the workforce (an ‘ETO reason’).
The legislation also lays down obligations on communication and consultation with staff. There is a duty to consult not directly with the employees themselves on an individual basis, but with ‘appropriate representatives of those employees’. The representatives of employees in a TUPE transfer have the right to be consulted and to receive information about the business transfer and what their employers may do as a result of the transfer.
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