The Right to Request Flexible Working

On 30 June 2014 the Flexible Working Regulations will be amended and the right to request flexible working will be extended to all employees after 26 weeks service, rather than only those with children under the age of 17 (or 18 if the child is disabled) and certain carers. Employers will have a duty to consider all requests in a reasonable manner, however businesses will have the flexibility to refuse requests on business grounds.

The new rules could have a significant impact on businesses especially if an employer is faced with multiple, conflicting requests.

Here are the key points to note:

• Employees must have 26 weeks continuous employment at the date the application is made

• Employers have a statutory duty to consider applications

• Once agreed it becomes a permanent change to the contract of employment

• An employee has the right to appeal if necessary against the outcome

• Negotiate an agreement if requested hours are not possible

• Only one application can be made in a 12 month period

Flexible working can cover hours of work, times of work and place of work and may include requests for difference patterns of work.  For more information visit

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