We all know that employing people can be rewarding and challenging in equal measure and, let’s face it, businesses would grind to a halt without a good team.
Managing your workforce in a small to medium-sized business can become a real headache as typically we don’t have the expertise in-house to deal with issues and lack the resources to employ an HR manager.
There are lots of professionals out there who are able to help you with contracts of employment, handbooks, policies and procedures, many of whom can also help you manage issues such as persistent absence, non-performance and long-term sickness.
While help with these issues can greatly help with the day-to-day running of your business, what happens if things go wrong and the relationship breaks down?
In July 2013 the government introduced fees of up to £1,200 to bring an employment claim, to discourage weak or malicious claims. As an employer you may feel that this is a good thing as the number of claims reduced by 79 per cent over the next three years.
However, in July 2017 the Supreme Court ruled these fees were unlawful and prevented adequate access to justice. Perhaps unsurprisingly there has been a massive increase in the numbers of cases since then.
So if an employee does claim from you, do you know whether you have insurance protection?
In view of the low numbers of claims in recent years many businesses have not seen this type of insurance as a priority, particular with other issues such as cyber protection much higher up on the list.
Employment Practices Liability
The cover is designed to provide you with the legal support you need in the event of a potential employment tribunal. In addition to this, the cover will also pay any awards made against you should the tribunal not go your way.
If arranged correctly, this cover will support you regardless of whether you have followed the correct procedures or consulted with a specified advice line.
Beware, however, of cheap imitations!
There are a number of providers of HR services, who also supply an ‘insurance backed’ helpline service. While these services are cost-effective and have a place, the insurance cover provided comes with conditions, which make claiming particularly difficult.
It may now be worth reviewing your insurance provision and considering whether you can afford to ignore the protection that Employment Practices Liability cover can provide.
If you’d like to know any more, feel free to get in touch – and watch Sam explaining in more detail below:
Sam Leeder ACII
Tel: 0114 398 4498