Recent events have greatly accelerated the move toward remote work in many industries. The transition has been beneficial for many workers, yet it is not without its downside. Perhaps the most vexing of these is that existing employment contracts do not provide clear guidance on remote work issues.
As a result, remote workers may find themselves victimised by companies taking advantage of loopholes in existing employment law, while businesses are often unsure of their rights when it comes to making demands on remote workers. If you find yourself in either position Frederick Solicitors can help.
Common Issues Arising From Remote Working
The following are some common issues that arise when former full-time office staff transition to full- or part-time remote work.
Understandably, there is a lot of confusion on both sides of the issue when it comes to employment contracts. For instance, there may be wording in the existing contract that says it applies only to work performed in a specific location (the company office in this case). As a result, the employee may lobby for an entirely new contract, but the employer may feel all that's needed is a simple amendment to the existing contract.
Mandating people to work from home
There may be cases when an employer wants to mandate remote work. For example: they may be facing the expiration of their expensive office lease and see remote work as a way to dramatically cut costs to gain a competitive advantage. Existing employment contracts, written before the move to remote work became commonplace, may not effectively address the issue, and labour law itself is not always crystal clear. As such, expert legal advice is required.
In some cases, employers may wish to reduce the salaries of remote workers, arguing that they are no longer incurring commuter-related expenses. Remote workers may strenuously object to such a move. If existing employment contracts allow for such a change, an employer is free to do so. Otherwise, they may need to negotiate with employees to reach an accommodation.
Frederick Solicitors can help
If you are an employer or employee faced with these or other remote work-related issues contact the team at Frederick Solicitors today.