The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has published its response following its consultation on the effectiveness of the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 (TUPE).
The consultation, which closed in January 2012, sought views on the effectiveness of TUPE 2006, following concerns that the Regulations ‘gold-plate’ the Acquired Rights Directive and are overly bureaucratic. The consultation formed part of the Government’s on-going review of employment law
In its response, the Government has confirmed that it will consider a number of suggested ideas “in due course”, including:
1. Whether the ‘service provision change’ provisions should be retained or repealed;
2. Whether liability for employees should pass entirely to the transferee as now, or be held jointly and severally by transferee and transferor;
3. Whether employee liability information should be provided earlier to the transferee; and
4.Whether an amendment to TUPE would be possible to ensure that a change of location of the workplace following a transfer does not necessarily lead to automatic unfair dismissal, (i.e. it is capable of constituting an Economic, Technical or Organisational reason entailing changes in the workforce.)
There will now be a period of policy design, during which the Government will look at these issues and decide what action should be taken. The Government will then introduce a consultation to amend TUPE in some respects, while, in other instances, it may simply improve the guidance on TUPE.