The government has published draft regulations which will generally require tribunals to order equal pay audits where an employer loses an equal pay case.
Subject to Parliamentary process, the regulations will take effect from 1 October 2014 and will apply to equal pay claims presented on or after that date.
An audit must include:
The tribunal will set a completion date for the audit to be completed, which must allow the employer at least three months. Once the audit has been submitted, the tribunal will determine whether it is compliant and, if not, order any shortcomings to be rectified. The tribunal can also impose a penalty of £5,000 for each failure to comply with an audit order.
The circumstances in which a tribunal will not order an audit are if:
There are also exemptions for existing micro-businesses and new businesses.
The draft regulations will also require the employer to publish the audit on its website for at least three years (unless this would involve a breach of a legal obligation) and to inform all employees covered by the audit where they can obtain a copy.
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