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Dealing with Flexible Working Requests

Duncan Lewis Employment Solicitors – Dealing with Flexible Working Requests


Since 2014, all employees have had the right to make flexible working requests, whether or not they have parental or caring duties.


Flexible working may involve varying start and finish times – or working remotely from home for part of the working week or day.


An employee will make a statutory application for flexible working to their employer after they have been in employment at a company for 26 weeks – and cannot make a further request within 12 months of a request.


Employers have a legal duty to consider each employee request for flexible working on its merits and respond “in a reasonable manner”.


ACAS offers an online guide to what constitutes handling a request for flexible working in a reasonable manner, but it would usually involve:


  • Considering the pros and cons of a request
  • Discussing the request with the employee
  • Responding in a timely manner
  • Giving reasons for refusing a request.


Issues with flexible working requests might arise if an employer has several requests to consider at any one time and must decide on the merits of each one.


Employees whose request for flexible working is refused have the right to appeal against an employer’s decision – and if they feel their request has not been treated in a reasonable manner, they may also decide to take their case to an Employment Tribunal.


This can leave employers in a near-impossible situation if faced with competing requests from more than one employee.


Duncan Lewis employment law solicitors can advise businesses of all sizes on employee requests for flexible working – including advising on policies for flexible working requests, which might include employees providing information about their request, including details of relevant family responsibilities, health issues or medical treatment, or relevant protected characteristics under the Equality Act 2010 (eg disability, religious observances).


Duncan Lewis employment law solicitors can also advise on any potentially contentious issues regarding one or more employee request for flexible working – as well as advising on creating a policy for flexible working requests.


Duncan Lewis Employment Law Solicitors – How we can help you


Duncan Lewis employment lawyers act on behalf of claimants and respondents in all Employment Tribunal related matters, so can understand potentially contentious employment matters from both sides, including high-cost employment cases.


The Duncan Lewis employment team can represent all types of employers, both large and small in matters under the Employment Rights Act 1996 and other relevant employment legislation – including:


  • Collective Redundancies and Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) (Amendment) Regulations 2014
  • Disability Discrimination Act 1995
  • Employment Act 2002
  • Employment Relations Act 1999
  • Equality Act 2010
  • Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974
  • Human Rights Act 1998
  • Working Time Regulations 1998
  • Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992
  • Trade Union Reform and Employment Rights Act 1993.


Duncan Lewis also has successful departments covering civil liberties and the Human Rights Act, as well as finance, property and housing, family and childcare, mental health, personal injury and immigration law – all of which may be relevant or offer additional insight into employment matters.


Our in-house experts are on hand to advise whenever necessary in an employment matter, including advising on employee requests for flexible working.


Duncan Lewis Employment Law Solicitors – Fees


Duncan Lewis employment law solicitors operate a transparent fee scale – and can offer a range of competitively priced funding options to suit all sizes of business:

  • No-win-no-fee
  • Damage based fee
  • Contingency fee
  • Fixed fees (for specific tasks)
  • Insurance funded cases.
Duncan Lewis believes clients should always know what they will be paying – and will advise on the best funding option at the initial client meeting.


Duncan Lewis Employment Law Solicitors – When to contact us


If you have a problem with employment or a flexible working request, it is important to take legal advice as soon as possible before a situation escalates.


Duncan Lewis can offer clear legal advice on employment law at any stage of an employment matter – including advising on issues arising from employees’ flexible working requests.


Duncan Lewis also has a successful track record in advising companies and employers on employment disputes and defending employee claims for flexible working at Employment Tribunals.


Duncan Lewis Employment Law Solicitors – How to contact us


Duncan Lewis has offices nationwide and in most major cities, with more than 20 offices across London and the southeast.


For expert legal advice on employment law and employee requests for flexible working, call Duncan Lewis employment solicitors on 020 7923 4020.

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