How the 48
How The 48 Hour Average Week Works
If you are a long-term employer of domestic staff, you will probably have previously considered how the 48 hours working week affects your working procedures. On the other hand perhaps you are new or relatively new to the employment of domestic staff, if which case this may well be an eye opener to you.
We probably are all aware of the term the “48 hour working week”, but how many know that 48-hour maximum average weekly working limit is imposed by the Working Time Regulations 1998.
So does it mean that your employees can only legally work 48 hours a week? The answer is Yes and No.
It is against the directive if staff have NOT signed an opt-out clause, or it is in their contract of employment that they have agreed to opt-out. They can legally work longer than an average of 48 hours if they HAVE signed an opt-out clause 0R it is written into their contract of employment.
So what is this clause and how does it have to be worded?
The following text is provided by the UK Government for you to use free of charge:
Example of opt-out agreement:
I [worker’s name] agree that I may work for more than an average of 48 hours a week. If I change my mind, I will give my employer [amount of time – up to 3 months’] notice in writing to end this agreement. Signed…………………………………… Dated…………………………………….
The employee can cancel their opt-out agreement whenever they want – even if it’s part of their employment contract.
They must give you at least 7 days’ notice. However, they have to give more notice (up to 3 months) if they have signed a written opt-out agreement.
The Graham Agency, keeping you informed.