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Employers' bad weather policy is worth checking, advises Human Capital Department in King's Lynn

With Christmas approaching many of us are looking forward to a break from work and to spend some time with friends and family, and maybe just catching up with mince pies and TV box sets such as Game of Thrones!

Hopefully the New Year will bring new opportunities, a new government, things to look forward to like summer holidays, but it is also likely to present practical challenges such as the winter weather – flooding, snow and freezing fog – which can make getting to work a job in itself.

Whilst many employers are sympathetic to short term difficulties, transport problems become problematic if longer term – the 27-day train strike announced by South Western Trains recently will make it difficult for commuters to get to work but they will be expected to make other arrangements. Recently we were asked if an employee can insist on working from home if they have problems getting to work.

Peter Lawrence, director of Human Capital Department (23343817)
Peter Lawrence, director of Human Capital Department (23343817)

Every employer will have slightly different rules about this, so to find out what the rules and expectations are at your employer the first thing to check is your contract of employment. Haven’t got one? – Oh dear! From 2020 employers are required to issue written contracts of employment to all employees from the first day of employment. The written contract normally spells out the expectations of the employer, in terms of hours of work and place of work, although it might not go any further than that.

Your company is also likely to have an Employee Handbook which contains various rules, procedures and expectations of employees, and/or a specific policy or procedure about, for example bad weather, and what to do if you are unable to get to work.

If faced with a problem in getting to work it is important to let your employer know, and to keep them informed if the problem cannot be resolved quickly.

All best wishes for Christmas and the New Year!

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