TE Legal Update: March 202005 March 2020

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Contracts of employment

Employers currently have up to two months to issue a statement of written particulars of employment to employees who have been working for more than a month.

This is about to change: as of 6 April 2020, the right to contract of employment for employees and workers will become mandatory for employers to issue from day one. What needs to be included within these terms has also been broadened.

It is recommended that employers start to review their current contracts of employment as soon as possible to check they contain what is required and check they have all been issued to staff to begin with. Backhouse Jones regularly has queries relating to what the contracts permit, to find that they have not actually been issued. Issuing contracts should now become an integral part of the latter stages of the recruitment process to ensure that this step is not omitted. As such, it is also recommended that processes are reviewed to delegate this task clearly and ensure that the correct documents are prepared in advance of new starters’ arrival.

Although not officially part of the changes in the new legislation, other specific transport-related provisions may also need to be communicated to staff by employers working in the transport sector. They should be addressed in the contracts of employment to ensure the standard and expectations are known from day one.


Changing of the guard

Two new traffic commissioners have been appointed for Wales and the North West.

Gerallt Evans will be the new traffic commissioner for the north-west of England. He has worked as a solicitor for over 30 years and for most of that time has been as prosecutor for the Crown Prosecution Service in Wales and London. In his previous role, Evans was deputy chief crown prosecutor with responsibility for all prosecutions in Welsh magistrates courts.

The second appointment is Victoria Davies, who is the new traffic commissioner for Wales. Davies has worked in the legal profession for over 25 years, and as a senior lawyer managing the transport team for the Welsh government since 2010. Prior to that, she was a senior advisory lawyer for the Department for Transport’s road transport advisory division.

Both commissioners started in their new roles last month.


PSVAR exemptions until August

The Public Service Vehicles Accessibility Regulations 2000, known as PSVAR, require buses and coaches designed to carry over 22 passengers on local and scheduled routes to incorporate features to enable disabled people to travel on them comfortably and safely, including a wheelchair space and a ramp or lift.

The Department for Transport has agreed to grant temporary exemptions until 31 July 2020 to operators of school services procured by schools and colleges where most children pay a fare. For more information about the issue, go to www.is.gd/wesuvi.

For more details about the update, go to www.is.gd/zetaki.


New forms have been published by DVSA for registering public service vehicles. The form to be used depends on how the vehicle was originally registered with DVLA:

■VTP 788 for vehicles approved under European Community Whole Vehicle Type Approval or National Small Series Type Approval

■VTP 789 for a vehicle that has an Individual Vehicle Approval (IVA) or a Certificate of Initial Fitness (COIF)

■VTP 790 if you need to notify DVSA of a change of registration mark for a public service vehicle.

These forms should be completed after you or the dealer registers your PSV with DVLA. Vehicles only need to be registered once, and doing so will enable operators to book an annual test.

There’s no fee to record or change the vehicle details with DVSA.

These forms will replace the ‘PSV Allocation of Registration Mark’ (RM1 and RM2) forms, which from this month will no longer be accepted.

Backhouse Jones

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