We use cookies to deliver our online services. Details of the cookies we use and instructions on how to disable them are set out in our Cookies Policy. By using this website you agree to our use of cookies. To close this message click close.

Government Flexible Working Consultation Ends

08 August 2011

LONDON, 8 August 2011 - The government's consultation - “Modern Workplaces” - which suggests changes to parental leave and flexible working rights, ends today, Monday 8 August 2011.


Vanessa Hogan, senior associate at law firm Hogan Lovells commented:

"The IOD is right to raise concerns about the proposed reforms to flexible working.  Simply transposing the existing statutory procedure into a Code of Practice does not address the concerns of many employers. That said, it is important to remember that the proposals are to extend the right to request flexible working - not the right to actually work flexibly. While the Government is proposing to extend the right to request flexible working to all employees, the eight business reasons under which a flexible working request can be rejected will remain unchanged. 

"When facing multiple flexible working requests an employer's main concern is likely to be the risk of an indirect discrimination claim from an employee whose request to work flexibly for childcare reasons (for example) is refused.  Employers (and employees) would benefit from better guidance on how the extension of the right to request flexible working to all employees interacts with an employer's duty not to indirectly discriminate. 

"In our experience clients are open to retaining and recruiting talent. Many employers will entertain a request to work flexibly either through an informal request system or as a result of a formal statutory request. Most are open to granting requests provided their business can support the request by the employees."

Maya Cronly-Dillon, senior associate at Hogan Lovells, added:

"While the current regime targets those with childcare responsibilities and carers, the latest proposals require employers to consider flexible working requests by any employee whatever the reason. Managing competing requests made for different reasons could pose some tricky employee relations issues. Certainly the expanded scope for potential requests will mean more management time spent handling them, an increased risk of grievances and, possibly, discrimination claims from employees who have their requests turned down." 


About Hogan Lovells


Hogan Lovells combines the breadth of business-oriented legal advice and high-quality service that clients have come to expect through working with its two founding firms – Hogan & Hartson and Lovells.

"Hogan Lovells" or the "firm" refers to the international legal practice comprising Hogan Lovells International LLP, Hogan Lovells US LLP, Hogan Lovells Worldwide Group (a Swiss Verein), and their affiliated businesses, each of which is a separate legal entity. Hogan Lovells International LLP is a limited liability partnership registered in England and Wales with registered number OC323639. Registered office and principal place of business: Atlantic House, Holborn Viaduct, London EC1A 2FG. Hogan Lovells US LLP is a limited liability partnership registered in the District of Columbia.

The word "partner" is used to refer to a member of Hogan Lovells International LLP or a partner of Hogan Lovells US LLP, or an employee or consultant with equivalent standing and qualifications, and to a partner, member, employee or consultant in any of their affiliated businesses who has equivalent standing. Rankings and quotes from legal directories and other sources may refer to the former firms of Hogan & Hartson LLP and Lovells LLP. Where case studies are included, results achieved do not guarantee similar outcomes for other clients.


Loading data