July 9, 2021

The consultation paper ‘Good Work Plan: establishing a new single enforcement body for employment rights’, which was published in July 2019, considered the case for a single labour market enforcement body to tackle what was described as ‘the deeply fragmented enforcement landscape’. In its response, published on 8 June 2021, the Government has confirmed that it is committed to creating such a body to support employers to comply with the law. The Government proposes that the new body will do this by building on the compliance activity of the existing enforcement bodies, providing detailed technical guidance, and introducing a compliance notice system for ‘lower harm breaches’.

In addition to taking over the work currently done by HMRC National

Minimum Wage Enforcement, the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority and the Employment Agency Standards Inspectorate, the new body will also have powers to tackle non-compliance, with the introduction of civil penalties for breaches of the gangmasters licensing and employment agency standards regimes where those breaches result in wage arrears. It will also have powers to enforce statutory sick pay, holiday pay and transparency in supply chains/ modern slavery statement reporting. The Government also proposes to work with the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) to consider whether the single enforcement body could do more to support individuals to pursue enforcement of employment tribunal awards.

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