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In January 2014 the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) (Amendment) Regulations 2014 (TUPE 2014) made various changes to the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 (TUPE).
One of the changes to TUPE introduced by TUPE 2014 was the so-called micro-business exception which applies to transfers taking place on or after 31 July 2014.
Under the micro-business exception the outgoing employer (the Transferor) and incoming employer (the Transferee) can inform and consult (if required) directly with its employees rather than ‘appropriate representatives’. The exception only applies if:
- there are no existing appropriate representatives; and
- the micro-business has not invited any of the affected employees to elect employee representatives.
This is great news for micro-businesses. It cuts out a level of red tape and gives them a choice. Micro-businesses can continue to offer employees the opportunity to elect appropriate representatives or give the information and consultation directly with affected employees.
What is a micro-business for TUPE?
A micro-business under TUPE 2014 is a business that employs 10 employees or less. According to the Department for Business Innovation and Skills guide published with TUPE 2014, the number of employees is judged at the time the employee liability information under TUPE must be given.
When does the obligation to inform under TUPE arise?
Every employer involved in a TUPE transfer with affected employees must provide information. Under TUPE 2006 the information must be provided long enough before the transfer to allow consultation to take place if required. Consultation will be necessary if, because of the transfer, measures are proposed.
TUPE is a complex area and any employer, big or small, is well advised to take advice from a TUPE specialist. Get in touch today with one of Quantrills’ specialist employment law solicitors who will help you to avoid the many pitfalls and make sure you have a smooth TUPE transfer.
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