As an employer you should issue employment contracts to new starters within 2 months of them starting work. Failure to do so can result in employees receiving up to four weeks pay as compensation.
Employment contracts: Legal requirements
You are required to issue your employees with a statement of their terms and conditions of employment within 2 months of them starting work. This is not the same as a job offer letter and needs to include very specific information. Normally the statement of terms and conditions of employment is incorporated into the contract of employment rather than being produced as a separate document. A failure to supply statement of terms can result in employees receiving up to four weeks pay as compensation.
Employers are also required to provide clear information as to whom the employee can apply to if they wish to appeal against a disciplinary decision or to raise a grievance as part of the statement of terms. In practice disciplinary and grievance policies are normally issued separately and are included in a staff handbook.
Issuing contracts and staff handbooks the easy way
Employment Contracts and Staff Handbooks can be issued through our HR Portal’s interactive document management system, which automatically emails them to your staff at the click of a button. Not only is this a quick and easy process but by issuing them this way an audit trail is created enabling you to demonstrate that they have been issued.
Our Varying Terms and Conditions Toolkit contains detailed guidance on changing the terms of an employee’s contract and includes template forms.
In summary – What employers should do:
- Issue contracts of employment to new starters within 2 months of them starting work.
- Issue staff with a staff handbook as soon as possible.
- Review your contracts and handbooks on a regular basis so that they reflect any changes to your business practices and take into account any changes to the law.