We were asked if we could find some guidance on what the legal standpoint of staff who are transferred to an Academy or MAT would be if the employer tried to change their Terms of employment.
Under TUPE it will continue to be the case that changes to employees’ terms and conditions if the sole or principal reason is the transfer will be void. Previously, changes to terms and conditions for a reason ‘connected to the transfer’ were also invalid, but this has now been removed. However changes may be valid:
● If the sole or principal reason is an “Economic, Technical or Organisational reason entailing changes in the workforce” and provided the employer and employee agree the change (see below).
● If the terms of the contract would have allowed the employer to make the change anyway, or a new development arises. For example the employer wins an order from a new client and has to bring in change to meet the needs of the new client.
● The employer should consult and seek agreement about any changes or explain in writing why points raised cannot be carried forward. This is a complex area and legal advice should be sought before action is taken.
These amendments apply to variations agreed on or after 31 January 2014 and transfers which took place on or after 31 January 2014.
The link below opens ACAS’ Guide on Varying Employee Contracts — it does state that additional rules stand f0r staff involved in TUPE transfers, as would be the case for existing staff transferred to an Academy/MAT.
This link goes to ACAS’ advice on TUPE, this is fairly complicated and we would really advise anyone potentially impacted to get professional advice from an Employment Lawyer, we provide this information as guidance..