LittleLaw: 2018 Year in Review

Introduction

2018 has seen many changes in the legal framework in the UK. Below, we’ve summarised some of the main changes that are have affected English law in the past year.

Brexit

The UK have begun negotiating its withdrawal agreement from the European Union. While the EU Withdrawal Act was passed in June, the terms of the nation’s withdrawal are still uncertain. The government started working on new laws (in the form of statutory instruments) to plug the legislative hole left by Brexit. The legislation is related to data protection, customs, sanctions and nuclear power, among other thing. 

Gender pay gap reporting

New legislation meant that large employers (with 250 or more employees) had to produce information on their gender pay gaps. By April, details from over 10,000 organisations was gathered and made public (read our summary on the gender pay gap here).

Employment status

In the case of the Pimlico Plumbers, the Supreme Court decided that the individual was a worker and not an independent contractor (read our summary on the case here). This meant that they were entitled to workers’ benefits, such as paid annual leave and protection from unlawful discrimination. With the increasing popularity of the gig economy, similar cases, seeking to establish the status of certain workers, are likely to arise

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

GDPR represented a huge change in European privacy laws (read our GDPR summary here). The regulation set stricter and more uniform data privacy rules throughout the EU, replacing the 1995 Data Protection Directive. This posed a challenge for businesses, developed new rights for individuals and gave new enforcement powers for regulators.. 

EU data single market

Digital data is a significant resource for innovation, job creation and growth in general. In November, the EU adopted a Regulation on free flow of data between its members. This seeks to remove restrictions within the EU to help create the Digital Single Market. 

Cyber security

With a wave of high-profile cyber-attacks this year, businesses are now required to respond differently when they arise. Many new regulations (such as GDPR) have increased the obligations of victims of cybersecurity to notify regulators of data breaches. There have also been significant judgments relating to cyber security, such as the Morrisons case and the Lloyds case (read our summary of the Morrisons case here).

Article written by Idin S.

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