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Impact of General Election on legislation

The calling of the General Election means that Parliament will be prorogued on Friday, meaning the end of the Parliamentary session. Legislation on the books will fall away or be rushed through today. The main legislation affecting the sector to be rushed through is the Digital Markets Bill, which covers online reviews, regulation of digital platforms and drip pricing.

The House of Lords is planning to approve the tipping Code of Practice on Friday afternoon so this will be on the statute. There remains some uncertainty whether this will formally confirm the commencement date of 1 October so we will keep members updated as the legislation progresses. Regardless, it seems prudent to plan based on the current legislation and Code of Practice for a 1 October change. Our webinar can support members with this.

The Low Pay Commission is currently consulting on the 2025 minimum wage rates and we are preparing our response. This is based on a remit given by the current Government, and they will make recommendations on that basis. The current forecast is for a new national living wage of £11.89 and no change to the age thresholds. Their recommendations will be assessed by a future Government, most likely in the Autumn for implementation next April.

Parliament is also expected to approve legislation that provides for extended licensing hours for the latter stages of Euro 2024 if the home nations progress. We will confirm this in due course.

Guidance on labour market changes due to come into force in October are likely to be delayed as we go into Purdah. In particular, ACAS has been working on guidance on the Predictable Hours and Protection of Workers (Harassment) laws, with input from UKHospitality.

A range of policies that have not reached parliamentary stage will now be considered by a future Government. These include packaging laws (including deposit return schemes), Martyn’s Law, cashless payment on gaming machines, pavement licensing rules and short-term letting registrations. We expect most of these to be taken forward by the next Government.