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Liabilities As An Employer – Important Points To Consider When Taking On Staff Members

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Employing the right people at the right time for your business can be both exciting and daunting. There are a myriad of responsibilities to consider as an employer, all of which need to comply with various elements of the law. Registering an employee, looking after them and a team, ensuring the correct salary and health and safety issues in the work place are all paramount. Listed below is an outline of the basics that need to adhere too and carefully considered when taking on new members of staff.

1. Register yourself as an Employer

When recruiting, advertising and selecting for the post on offer it is important to not act with any form of discrimination. Therefore it is considered unlawful to discriminate against age, religion, gender or race. Evaluating a potential recruit should initially be assessed on skill set and their abilities as laid out in a CV, at this initial stage.

Liabilities As An Employer - Important Points To Consider When Taking On Staff Members

2. Ability, Qualifications and References

Check all qualifications and take up the references that have been given in the application. Also check eligibility to work in the UK, are there any restrictions, such as length of stay, what type of work can be done. It is up to the employer in the UK to prevent migrants working illegally, so this is important to check up.

3. Suitability for Post

An employee should be given a letter within the first two months of starting their role which stipulates the day they started in your employment, salary, working hours and holiday entitlement. Details should also state how you or an employees can terminate their contract and what/if any disciplinary or grievance procedures are put in place. Draw up your company’s confidentiality policy, discuss and write down appearance and expected behaviour.

4. Employment Contracts

If you are paying your staff PAYE then as an employer you will need to deduct tax and national insurance at source. You also need to take into account NI contributions as an employer. Always itemise the pay slip so deductions are clear. The next step is to make these payment deductions to HMRC. It is essential that these contributions are made on time as there are very strict penalties for companies that don’t adhere to this. An employee must always be paid at least the minimum wage, this is a legal requirement. Pensions, time off sick, holiday pay, also need to be considered in an employee contract.  For more advice, speak to a solicitor who can help you further.

There are alternatives to employing someone full time. Subcontracting, agency workers, freelancers and outsourcing are all other possibilities to fill the gap that you might need. It is possible to find skilled labour sources elsewhere without having to take on the responsibilities of an employer. This gives the advantage of being able to pick and choose when you require the extra help. It may be that you require help seasonally or if a big contract comes your way.  Whatever you situation, make sure you have the correct information to hand.

By Harry Price

Harry Price is a freelance writer and painter, who lives on the south coast, with his wife and 3 dogs.  In his spare time, he loves running.  His dogs double as training buddies.

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