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Employers should take note of the following legal changes to come into force in October. Employment law solicitors Manchester outline these outline these coming changes;

– Mandatory modern slavery statements

Slavery was abolished in the nineteenth century, but from October 2015, organisations carrying on business in the UK with a turnover above £36 million will be required to publish a modern slavery statement every year. These statements are designed to ensure that human trafficking and slavery are not taking place in supply chains or any part of the business. The Government will be publishing guidance on what to include in these statements.

– National minimum wage increase

From 1 October, the national minimum wage for workers above the age of 21 will increase by 20 pence to £6.70 per hour. The hourly rate of workers aged between 18-20 and 16-17 will increase by 17 pence and 8 pence respectively. Employers who pay workers less than the minimum wage have to pay back arrears of wages at the current rate but will also face financial penalties of up to £20,000.

– Smoking ban in cars with children present comes into practice

Smoking in company vehicles is currently banned where more than one employee uses the vehicle or the vehicle is used to transport members of the public. From 1 October, it will be illegal to smoke in any private vehicle with anyone under the age of 18 present.. Company car policies may need re-evaluating as often employers permit employees to use company vehicles for their own private use, which may include driving children.