New Coronavirus Regulations – how they affect workers and employers.

  • The government has made new coronavirus regulations which came into force on 28th September 2020. These apply in England only. Large fines may be enforced against employers so it is important that all employers monitor staff and ensure their staff are aware of their obligations and understand they may face disciplinary action for failing to comply.

Workers’ obligations

  • Where a worker is:
  • aware of the requirement to self-isolate; and
    • due to undertake activities through their work during the isolation period outside of the place in which are self-isolating,

the worker must notify their employer as soon as reasonably practicable and in any event before they are next due to start work of the requirement to self-isolate and the start and end dates of the isolation period.

  • An agency worker must notify their agent, principal and/or employer. 
  • The worker faces a £50 fine if they fail to comply.
  • These obligations only apply to notifications received by a worker pursuant to a test after 28 September 2020 and do not apply in situations where a worker is notified of the need to self-isolate through the government’s track and trace smartphone app only.

Employers’ obligations

  • Where the employer of a self-isolating worker is aware of the requirement to self-isolate, the employer must not knowingly allow the worker to attend any place other than the place in which they are self-isolating, during the isolation period, for any purpose related to the worker’s employment.
  • An employer will clearly not breach these obligations if they allow a worker to work from home (assuming this is the place in which the worker is required to self-isolate).
  • Employers face a £1,000 fine for the first breach with stepped increases up to £10,000 for four or more breaches.
  • Once an agent, principal and/or employer have received a notification from a worker, they are required to notify each other and any other principals to whom the worker will be supplied during the isolation period.
  • An agent, principal and/or employer face a £1,000 fine for failure to comply with this notification requirement.

The contents of this article are intended as guidance for readers. It can be no substitute for specific advice. Consequently we cannot accept responsibility for this information, errors or matters affected by subsequent changes in the law, or the content of any website referred to in this article. © Mundays LLP.


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