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The Queen’s Speech - December 2019

The Queen’s Speech last week has attracted much press attention, not least because it comes hot on the heels of a highly contentious general election. The Conservative Party proposes some 29 new Bills and the proposals in the speech have been described by Boris Johnson as ‘radical’.

That said, the Speech simply follows through on some of the election pledges made by the Conservative Party and there are no real surprises here. 

For a summary of manifesto promises, please see the Emplaw article here

To summarise the Queens Speech and briefing notes:

  • There will be an Employment (Allocation of Tips) Bill to ensure that tips go direct to workers and not their bosses.
  • The Government will continue to deliver on the commitments set out in the Good Work Plan. For a useful briefing on what is already in progress from the previous Tory administration see the updated article we published in November Your essential briefing on The Good Work Plan and subsequent developments
  • The Government bring forward measures to encourage flexible working and to  introduce the entitlement to leave for unpaid carers .
  • An Australian-style points based immigration system will be introduced for skilled workers across the world. From 2021.As a precursor the Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill will provide for: ending the free movement of EU citizens under UK law; the power to align the treatment of EU citizens arriving after January 2021 with non-EU citizens, and to maintain the treatment of EU citizens resident in the UK before exit day; clarifying the immigration status of Irish citizens in the UK once the free movement rules are removed from UK law; confirming the deadline for applications to be made under the EU Settlement Scheme; giving EU citizens and their family members who apply a right of appeal against EU Settlement Scheme decisions; The power to make changes to the current rules for access to benefits and social security coordination for EU nationals.
  • The Government pledges to increase the National Living Wage (NLW), reaching two-thirds of median earnings within five years (projected to be around £10.50 p.h. by 2024) and to extend the NLW to workers aged 21 and over within five years.
  • The Government does not make any mention of IR35 in the Queen’s Speech