Businesses’ compliance with UK laws and regulations is becoming increasingly complex as the number of relevant laws and regulations increases considerably. In response to this, businesses need to allocate more resources towards ensuring ongoing compliance with the regulatory market within which they operate. This means that one-off regulatory checks are no longer adequate – businesses need to employ commercial solicitors to undertake compliance checks on an ongoing basis. For illustration, the following are some of the major compliance areas which are subject to ongoing change.
The protections afforded to employees under UK employment law have increased considerably over past decades. At the same time, there has been a correlating increase in litigation commenced by employees against their employer. Such disputes cause huge losses to business, both in terms of financial penalties, negative publicity and the cost of defending legal proceedings. A commercial solicitor will ensure that policies and procedures in relation to employment practices ensure legal compliance, including those regarding: recruitment; anti-discrimination and equal opportunity; disciplinary and grievance procedures; redundancy; and dismissal.
Health and safety
Businesses health and safety obligations are treated very seriously under UK law. Non-compliance can be met with serious penalties, including criminal liability. This is not to mention the potential for costly and damaging legal claims from injured employees and contractors. Employers have both statutory and common law duties of care that extend to compliance with health and safety law and the provision of a safe workplace for their employees. A commercial solicitor can ensure that businesses’ obligations under the law are met through adequate workplace’s policies and procedures.
Consumers are extended a broad range of rights and protections under UK law and could even ask for legal help from a consumer lawyer. Businesses must be aware of these rights and ensure that they are observed in order to avoid costly legal disputes. Failure to meet obligations under consumer laws can lead to prosecution and to unfavourable publicity. A commercial solicitor will review the policies and procedures of a business to ensure they are legally compliant.