Implement pay rate changes or count the cost

BOILING POINT: Kate Brooks, partner and head of employment at Ellis Jones Solicitors, says employers must take reasonable steps to mitigate the effects of the heatwave in the workplace

PAY THE COST: Kate Brooks, partner and head of employment at Ellis Jones Solicitors, says employers must introduce new statutory rates of pay

A raft of new increases to statutory pay rates has come into force, employment experts at a regional law firm have advised.

They include maternity, paternity, adoption, parental bereavement and sick pay rates as well as changes to the National Living Wage and National Minimum Wage.

Regional law firm Ellis Jones Solicitors – with more than 170 staff in six offices across the South – is reminding employers to ensure policies are refreshed, payrolls updated and staff informed.

Partner Kate Brooks, head of employment/HR Services, said: “It is important to make sure that these type of pay rate increases don’t slip through the cracks.

“The latest rises are an increase of 10% on 2022/2023 in many cases and represent not insignificant sums for employers or employees.

“There may be other factors to take into account which complicate the picture and need to be considered, such as timescales and average earnings, especially at larger firms with sizeable payrolls.”

Under the changes statutory maternity, paternity, adoption, shared parental and parental bereavement pay are now £172.48 per week – up from £156.66 – although there are differing provisions for the various schemes.

The weekly rate of statutory sick pay (SSP) is now £109.40, up from £99.35.
The weekly earnings threshold for a worker to be eligible for the statutory parental pay rates or statutory sick pay remain the same, at £123 per week.

Kate added: “Statutory pay rates can be a minefield.

“Clearly employees will be unhappy if they miss out, while in some cases, such as for minimum wages, non-compliance is a criminal offence.

“It is advisable for businesses and individuals to check the latest changes and seek advice from qualified and regulated professionals if they are in any doubt about what it means for them.”

The National Living Wage has increased from £9.50 to £10.42 per hour for those aged 23 and over.

Ellis Jones has offices in Bournemouth, Poole (Canford Cliffs), Ringwood, Swanage, Wimborne and London.

Visit the Ellis Jones website to find out more about HR and employment.