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ACAS publishes draft code of practice on the extended right to request flexible working

Julie recently blogged on the changes to flexible working requests being introduced in the Children and Families Bill, which are expected to come into effect in 2014. One of the new changes is that the current statutory procedure for considering requests will be removed. Instead, employers will have a duty to consider all requests in a reasonable manner and to notify the employee of its decision within three months of the application.

ACAS has been tasked with producing a statutory code of practice to define what “reasonable” should mean in the context of flexible working requests. It has now produced a draft code of practice for consultation purposes, which is available here.

The draft Code is deliberately concise and principles-based. It is not intended to discuss good practice in dealing with flexible working requests, which will be dealt with in a separate non-statutory “good practice guide”. ACAS is seeking views from employees and employers, particularly small businesses who often don’t have HR support and may face challenges in managing flexible working requests. Responses are due by 20 May 2013.

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