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extension to the Flexible Working Regulations 2014

9 June 2014

Currently only employees with children under 17 (or disabled children under 18) and carers can request flexible working. The Flexible Working Regulations 2014 are due to come into force on 30 June 2014 and will extend this right allowing all employees with 26 weeks of continuous employment to apply for flexible working, regardless of their caring responsibilities.

It isn’t all bad news for employers; the statutory procedure to consider the request will be replaced with a requirement for the request to be reviewed in a ‘reasonable manner’, and within three months of submission.

The basic right to the request hasn’t changed; an employee can only submit one request in a 12 month period and employers can still reject requests for any of the eight legitimate business grounds. Hopefully this will continue to ensure that the right to work flexibly, although extended to a larger number of employees, remains balanced between an individual’s needs and the needs of the organisation as a whole, bringing benefits to both.

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