Exclusivity clauses expelled from zero-hour contracts. Or are they?

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Posted in:Corporate and Commercial, HR and Employment|May 28, 2015 | Join the mailing list

In the lead up to the General Election 2015, berg predicted legislation on zero-hour contracts coming into effect ‘before too long’ and low and behold – legislation regarding zero-hour contracts came into force on 26 May.

The new legislation attempts to ban exclusivity clauses which require employees to work solely for their employer and for no one else, despite the fact that they are not guaranteed any work under their zero-hour contract and have no security. On the face of
it, a victory for employees.

However, some commentators are reported as saying that there are no enforcement measures to the ban, meaning there is no deterrent for any employer that still attempts to enforce an exclusivity clause.

As employers are not obliged to provide work to their employees under zero-hour contracts, if a first employer is informed of an employee working elsewhere for a second employer, then the employee ‘could find their hours at the first company reduced or cut

A spokesperson for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (“BIS”) has been reported as saying “we are able to use secondary legislation to create a route of redress for any individual whose employer ignores the ban.”

With such public feeling against zero-hour contracts and the BIS spokesperson reported as also stating that “the Government is serious about tackling exploitative zero-hours contracts and we have taken the first step by banning them”, we await to see if there
is any legislation that takes that second step.

For more information about any of the above or for practical commercial advice on this or any other aspect of employment law, please contact
Nigel Crebbin of the Berg Employment Team on 0161 833 9211 or email him at

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(The information and opinions contained in this article are not intended to be comprehensive, nor to provide legal advice. No responsibility for its accuracy or correctness is assumed by Berg or any of its partners or employees. Professional legal advice should
be obtained before taking, or refraining from taking, any action as a result of this article.)



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