YORK businesses are facing a new year like no other, says a leading employment law expert.

The impact of Brexit, changes to work patterns and flexible working as well as changes to off-payroll working rules are among the issues to consider.

Tiggy Clifford said it was important for employers to think about these issues as they head into 2021 while navigating the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

"With freedom of movement between the UK and the EU set to end on December 31, 2020, employers must understand the changes to right to work checks," said Tiggy, a partner with York employment law firm, Torque Law.

Until June 30, 2021, an employer is able to confirm an EU national’s right to work in the UK using their passport or national ID card. But, from July 1, these alone will not be sufficient. A new online checking system can be used by employers from that date.

Tiggy also said employers willing to embrace long-term agile working arrangements must be clear about how this applies and be aware that contractual changes may be required These could include base location, expenses, expected working hours performance management, and health and safety obligations.

She encouraged businesses to consider an agile working policy outlining expectations.

Tiggy also highlighted the planned changes to off-payroll working rules which come into force on April 6, 2021, when companies must determine whether, for tax purposes, contractors are deemed employees.

"Those that are deemed employees will need to be processed through payroll, triggering an immediate financial impact for the employer or contractor.

"These are just a handful of the changes that employers have to think about and, as we continue to support our clients through the complexities of employment law, we appreciate that 2021 is the beginning to a new year like no other."