Flooding — wading through the employment issues

By Jayne Flint

The recent downpour has resulted in the flooding of many businesses. At the same time, employees are struggling to get into work due to their own homes being flooded or the closure of transport links. How can employers deal with these circumstances?

Where the business itself has closed due to adverse weather, an employer can ask its employees to work from home or, if alternative premises are available, employees may be asked to transfer to different premises until their place of work is restored.

Where the employer has an express clause in the contracts of employment entitling it to make such requests, the employer can insist on the employee’s co-operation. Alternatively, the employer may be able to argue an implied right to temporarily transfer employees in exceptional circumstances provided the right is exercised reasonably. Another option would be to give employees the choice of taking holiday…

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