About us

Greene & Greene is a long established firm of solicitors based in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk. Our lawyers advise individuals and businesses based all over the UK.

We regularly attract new clients who have been using firms in London, but now receive a more cost efficient and more personal service from us here in Bury St Edmunds.

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Monthly Archives

Entries in Employment (43)


Preparing payslips

We just wanted to make you aware that the Employment Rights Act 1996 (Itemised Pay Statement) (Amendment) Order 2018 was laid before Parliament yesterday (8th February 2018) and is due to come into force on 6 April 2019.

It requires payslips to state the number of hours being paid where wages vary according to time worked; either as an aggregate number of hours or as separate figures for different types of work (or rate of pay).

If you have any questions regarding employment law please contact Greg Jones (gregjones@greene-greene.com ~ 01284 717446) or Angharad Ellis Owen (aellisowen@greene-greene.com ~ 01284 717453)

For more information on the services offered by Greene & Greene Solicitors please visit www.greene-greene.com and follow on Twitter @GreeneGreeneLaw.


A year of equal pay

It is a century since women first won the right to vote in Britain. Let us honour that brave generation by making this the year we win equal pay.” Carrie Gracie, Journalist.

The Equal Pay Act 1970 was introduced 48 years ago to ensure equal pay for men and women who do equivalent or ‘like’ work, yet women are still earning less than men. 

The Government has pledged to ‘end gender pay gap in a generation.’  Consequently, gender pay gap reporting is now mandatory for all organisations with 250 or more employees.

We predicted that one of the consequences of publishing the gender pay gap would be an increase in grievances about pay which in turn could result in equal pay claims; our prediction was right!

Last year the BBC published a 10.7% gender pay gap. As a result, according to BBC Women, a group of about 150 broadcasters and producers made complaints about equal pay.  

Carrie Gracie, who worked as the China Editor for the BBC learned that in the previous financial year, the two men earned at least 50% more than the two women”.  She maintains that “this is not the gender pay gap that the BBC admits to.... It is pay discrimination and it is illegal.” The BBC maintains that there were differences between roles which justified the pay gap. Carrie Gracie resigned as a result of a “dismayingly incompetent and undermining grievance process which still has no outcome.” It is said that the BBC have commissioned PwC to conduct a pay audit of all ‘on-air’ staff. The Equality and Human Rights Commission has also recently announced that it will consider whether further action against the BBC is required.

The BBC is not however the only organisation which has identified a gender pay gap.  Based on the data published to date (of approximately 500 organisations); PwC themselves have a high gender pay gap, with a 33.1% difference in women’s pay compared to men. Based on published data, the highest is Phase Eight with a 64.8% difference. Virgin Money, Ladbrokes Coral and Easy Jet have all been in the news recently as a result of their high gender pay gap.

The pressure for transparency and equal pay is growing; is your business ready for this change?




 Contact Us

If you have any questions on gender pay gap reporting, equal pay or employment law generally please contact Angharad Ellis Owen (aellisowen@greene-greene.com ~ 01284 717453) or Greg Jones (gregjones@greene-greene.com ~ 01284 717446).

For more information on the services offered by Greene & Greene Solicitors please visit www.greene-greene.com and follow on Twitter @GreeneGreeneLaw.


Update on Gender Pay Gap Reporting

Employers with 250 or more employees have until 4 April 2018 to publish their gender pay gap reports. To date, only 502 employers (out of an estimated 9,000) have reported on their gender pay obligations.

If you require any assistance in order to comply with your obligations under Gender Pay Gap Reporting (GPGR) please get in touch with our Employment Team.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (ECHR) has launched a consultation on its proposal to use enforcement powers to take action against employers who do not comply with the requirement to publish information on their gender pay gap.

The consultation for the planned approach to enforcement will run until 2 February 2018.

In summary the ECHR’s proposal includes:

  • Encouraging overall compliance, such as posting the number of compliant and non-compliant employers on social media before and just after the compliance date.
  • Promotion of enforcement work in order to encourage other employers to comply with the GPGR.
  • Informal action and cooperation is the preferred option but formal enforcement action will be pursued where employers do not comply.
  • In 2018/19, the intention is to focus enforcement work on employers who do not publish the information required by the GPGR. If they have the capacity to do so, they may also take action against employers for publication of inaccurate data.

Further information about the proposal and responding to the consultation are available by following the link below.


Contact Us

If you have any questions on employment law please contact Angharad Ellis Owen (aellisowen@greene-greene.com ~ 01284 717453) or Greg Jones (gregjones@greene-greene.com ~ 01284 717446). For more information on the services offered by Greene & Greene Solicitors please visit www.greene-greene.com and follow on Twitter @GreeneGreeneLaw.


What does the 2017 Autumn Budget mean for Employers and Employees?

The Chancellor delivered his 2017 Autumn Budget speech on Wednesday 22 November. On the same day, the full Budget report was published by the Government.

Employment lawyer, Greg Jones talks through the key points that will be of interest to employers and employees as summarised by the Employment Lawyers Association.


The Government has confirmed that it has accepted the recommendations of the Low Pay Commission (LPC) for increases to the national living wage (NLW) and the national minimum wage (NMW). Accordingly, from April 2018 the Government will increase the NLW, which applies to workers aged 25 and over, by 4.4% from £7.50 to £7.83. The LPC has estimated that this will benefit over 2 million workers. At the same time, the NMW rates will be increased as follows:

•             from £7.05 to £7.38 for 21 to 24 year olds;

•             from £5.60 to £5.90 for 18 to 20 year olds;

•             from £4.05 to £4.20 for 16 and 17 year olds; and

•             from £3.50 to £3.70 for apprentices.


In accordance with its commitment to raise the personal allowance (PA) to £12,500 and the higher rate threshold (HRT) to £50,000 by 2020, the Government has announced that in the 2018/19 tax year the PA and HRT will be increased to £11,850 and £46,350 respectively. The Government has also announced that, with effect from April 2018, there will be no benefit in kind charges on electricity that employers provide to charge employees’ electric vehicles. The report further details a number of changes the Government will make to the taxation of employee expenses following a call for evidence that was published in March 2017.

Employment status

The Government has stated that it will publish a discussion paper as part of its response to the Taylor review of employment practices, which will explore the case and options for longer-term reform to make employment status tests for both employment rights and tax clearer. It has acknowledged that this is an important and complex issue, and it will therefore work with stakeholders to ensure that any potential changes are considered carefully.

Link to Budget report:


If you have any questions regarding employment matters please contact Greg Jones (gregjones@greene-greene.com ~ 01284 717446) or  Angharad Ellis Owen (aellisowen@greene-greene.com ~ 01284 717453). For more information on the services offered by Greene & Greene Solicitors please visit www.greene-greene.com and follow on Twitter @GreeneGreeneLaw.


Data Protection is evolving - are you ready?

Angharad Ellis Owen, a Barrister within the Greene & Greene Employment Team, talks about the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that is due to come into force on 25 May 2018. This new EU regulation replaces the existing Data Protection Act 1998 and aims to keep pace with the evolving digital world.

With Brexit looming, the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) reported the government’s confirmation that the UK will be implementing the GDPR. Karen Bradley, The Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, stated: “We will be members of the EU in 2018 and therefore it would be expected and quite normal for us to opt into the GDPR and then look later at how best we might be able to help British business with data protection while maintaining high levels of protection for members of the public.”  

Whilst Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham has told businesses there’s no time to delay in preparing for “the biggest change to data protection law for a generation”, a YouGov report suggests that only 30% of the UK's businesses have so far taken steps to prepare for the introduction of the GDPR.

It has been said that the “GDPR is an evolution of the existing rules, not a revolution” and it is fair to say that the main concepts and principles remain unchanged; for example, the concepts of personal data, data controllers and data processors are broadly similar. However, the GDPR introduces new concepts and enhancements, such as the definition of personal data being extended to include IP addresses. Accountability and transparency are key concepts of the GDPR and preparing for the change will certainly require the attention and additional financial resources from organisations.  

Some of the main changes to be introduced by the GDPR are:

  • Harmonisation – of privacy laws across EU members states.
  • Fines – the ICO wields a bigger stick with fines against data controllers and data processors based on a two-tier basis. For the most serious violations of the law, the ICO will have the power to fine companies up to €20 million or 4% of a company’s total annual worldwide turnover for the preceding year.
  • Consent - the framework for consent is strengthened. Consent must be freely given, specific, informed and unambiguous, and a positive affirmation of the individual’s agreement. It will no longer be possible to rely on implied consent.  You should therefore review how consent is managed and explore seeking consent to meet the new GDPR requirement.
  • Data breaches – the GDPR places an obligation to notify the ICO within 72 hours of a data breach where it is likely to result in a risk to the rights and freedoms of individuals, such as through identity theft or a confidentiality breach. The ICO recommends that you take action now to ensure that you have the right procedures in place to detect, report and investigate a personal data breach.
  • Subject access requests (SAR) - in most cases the charge will no longer apply to process the SAR and organisations will have a month to comply with a SAR request.
  • Privacy Notices - additional information must be provided to data subjects, such as explaining the lawful basis for processing personal data.
  • Data Protection Impact Assessments (DPIAs) - this will become a legal requirement in circumstances where processing operations are likely to present specific risks to data subjects (e.g where new technology is being deployed).
  • Data Protection Officers - whilst public authorities (and some other specific organisations) must designate a named Data Protection Officer who has responsibility for data protection compliance, it is recommended by the ICO that all organisations have such a designated officer.
  • Demonstrating compliance - organisations will need to demonstrate compliance with the GDPR.
  • Children - GDPR introduces special protection for children’s personal data, though only in the context of commercial internet services, such as social networking.
  • International - for organisations that operate in more than one EU member state, the ‘main establishment’ will become the lead data protection supervisory authority.


It is important that you start preparing now, for example you should consider:

  • Conducting an audit of all personal data processed - to understand what personal data you hold, the source of the data and who it is shared with. 
  • Consider why you process this data.
  • Ensure that you have systems (e.g. audit trails) in place to demonstrate compliance.
  • Allocate a Data Protection Officer.
  • Review all data processing contracts with a view to updating from May 2018.
  • Review and update internal policies and procedures, such as Data Protection Policies, Bring Your Own Device to Work Policy, Privacy Notices and Consent.
  • Review, update and/or implement internal processes, e.g. SAR process, DPIA, and data breaches.
  • Consider training key personnel on GDPR, who in turn can cascade knowledge business-wide.

The ICO has produced guidance on the steps that organisations should be taking now to prepare for the introduction of the GDPR (see useful links below).

Contact Us

If you have any questions in relation to your obligations or any other employment law matters please contact Angharad Ellis Owen (aellisowen@greene-greene.com ~ 01284 717453) or Greg Jones  (gregjones@greene-greene.com ~ 01284 717 446).

For more information on the services offered by Greene & Greene Solicitors please visit www.greene-greene.com and follow on Twitter @GreeneGreeneLaw.

Useful links





Greene & Greene present Law Award at West Suffolk College


West Suffolk College held its Celebration of Achievement Awards for 2017 in a large marquee in the college grounds on Friday 30 June. This annual event recognises students for their hard work and dedication to their chosen subjects.

Greene & Greene is proud of its association with West Suffolk College and sponsored its ‘Outstanding Student of the Year Business Management (Law)’ award for the second year. Angharad Ellis Owen, Employment Law Barrister at Greene & Greene, was delighted to present the award to Andrew Stokes for his hard work throughout the year, which was rewarded with excellent results.

Hospitality students from the College’s Edmunds restaurant catered for the gala dinner, with entertainment provided by the A Capella student group, Amado, and a choir from Conservatoire East.

If you have any questions regarding employment law matters please contact Angharad Ellis Owen (aellisowen@greene-greene.com ~ 01284 717453).  For more information on the services offered by Greene & Greene Solicitors please visit http://www.greene-greene.com/index.html and follow on Twitter @GreeneGreeneLaw.