Konsileo https://konsileo.com Protect Your Business. Properly. Mon, 07 Jun 2021 13:46:04 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.7.2 https://konsileo.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/cropped-SquareButterfly-32x32.png Konsileo https://konsileo.com 32 32 HSE Cornerstones – Protecting Workers From Heat Stroke https://konsileo.com/hse-cornerstones-protecting-workers-from-heat-stroke https://konsileo.com/hse-cornerstones-protecting-workers-from-heat-stroke#respond Fri, 04 Jun 2021 10:00:44 +0000 https://konsileo.com/?p=4188 The warmer temperatures and long days of summer provide employers with an opportunity to accomplish various outdoor tasks that might not be possible during colder parts of the year. However, it’s important that organisations across all sectors are aware of the dangers that summer conditions can pose to workers.

Heat-related illness can result in severe consequences, including death. One of the most severe types of heat-related illness is heat stroke. Heat stroke can occur when a person’s body has depleted its supply of water and salt. The affected individual’s core body temperature may then begin to rise to deadly levels. Symptoms of heat stroke may include:

  • Hot, red or flushed dry skin
  • A rapid pulse
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Vomiting or confusion
  • Seizures
  • Fainting
  • A body temperature greater than 38C

Because of how dangerous heat stroke can be, it’s of the utmost importance that employers take all necessary precautions to minimise heat-related dangers. As such, employers should consider the following steps:

  • Educate employees. Train employees to not only monitor themselves for symptoms of heat-related illness, but also to properly determine whether a colleague may be in danger.
  • Schedule tasks appropriately. Schedule the most physically taxing tasks during cooler parts of the day, such as in the early morning and evening.
  • Acclimatise workers. Acclimatisation is a process during which workers are gradually introduced to a warm work environment in order to help their bodies safely adjust to the conditions.
  • Provide water. Offer plenty of cool water and encourage workers to drink regularly in order to stay hydrated.
  • Create opportunities for relief. Provide shade or another means of shelter located out of direct sunlight. Have employees take frequent breaks to cool off.

For more information on protecting from heat stroke, contact your Konsileo broker today.

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Commercial Insurance Profile – June 2021 https://konsileo.com/commercial-insurance-profile-june-2021 https://konsileo.com/commercial-insurance-profile-june-2021#respond Wed, 02 Jun 2021 10:26:49 +0000 https://konsileo.com/?p=4195 The Importance of Flexibility in Future Workplaces

Many employers and organisations across the UK may be in the midst of reopening and attempting to return to how they operated before the coronavirus pandemic. With this in mind, it’s possible that workforces will grow and competition for top talent will increase. In order to recruit and retain employees, it’s important for employers to understand the priorities of both current and prospective employees in a post-coronavirus future.

Remote work was already a growing trend prior to the events of the past year, but the pandemic greatly accelerated its rise in popularity. With many employees having now gotten used to working from home, organisations must understand how remote work has changed the employment landscape. Industry experts expect that flexibility, such as remote or hybrid work environments, will be a top priority for many workers even after all coronavirus-related restrictions have been lifted.

Consider the following findings from a Microsoft Surface and YouGov survey conducted earlier this year:

  • 87% of employees reported that their employers had adapted well to hybrid work.
  • 56% of employees said that they are happier working from home.
  • 57% of respondents said that working from home has allowed them to maintain a healthier work-life balance.

It’s also important for organisations to understand that the desire for workplace flexibility is not a new trend caused only by the pandemic. Generation Z (people born between 1995-2010) now makes up a majority of the world’s population. As such, these young people will soon make up a significant portion of the workforce. According to a 2019 study conducted by The Workforce Institute at Kronos, 33% of Generation Z employees said that they would not work for an employer who gave them no control over their work schedule.

In a post-pandemic world, it’s important for employers to understand that top talent may prioritise a variety of factors aside from financial compensation. If workers are not happy with a return to stringent, on-site work arrangements, they may look elsewhere for their desired flexibility.

Steps for Keeping Lone Workers Safe

Employers are responsible for maintaining safe and healthy working conditions for their workers. This requirement extends to employees who may be working away from their employer’s premises, especially when they may be working alone or without supervision.

When an employee is working alone, they may be subject to many additional risks and hazards. For example, delivery drivers or couriers may find themselves in areas that are unfamiliar or unsafe. Organisations must take the time to understand and mitigate potential risks in order to keep employees safe at all times. Consider the following steps:

  • Assess the risks. Lone workers may have a greater chance of encountering violence or struggling with mental health issues.
  • Select proper workers. Some employees may have medical concerns that make them less capable of working by themselves.
  • Consider the work. Certain tasks or settings, such as confined spaces, might not be suitable or safe for solitary work.
  • Provide training. Training workers on how to manage and cope with dangerous situations, especially those that may involve potential violence, can help limit the consequences.
  • Communicate. Establish regular intervals of contact and be sure to pay attention to any concerns or feedback from lone employees.

Lone workers may inherently experience higher risk levels than those who work with supervisors or colleagues. It’s of the utmost importance that managers and senior leaders take these situations seriously and remain apprised of all developments that may put lone employees at risk.

For more information on the importance of flexibility in future workplaces and keeping lone workers safe, contact your Konsileo broker today.

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Market Outlook – Management Insurance https://konsileo.com/market-outlook-do-insurance https://konsileo.com/market-outlook-do-insurance#respond Mon, 24 May 2021 10:33:03 +0000 https://konsileo.com/?p=4172
What is Management Insurance?

Management insurance is a comprehensive solution, providing financial peace of mind for three main heads of cover:

  • Directors and Officers
  • Company Protection (Entity)
  • Employment Disputes

Directors* and officers* (D&O) have personal and unlimited liability when running and company. Should the person make a mistake, error, omission or fail to which causes a financial loss to a stakeholder*, the stakeholder will be entitled to litigate against the person. Insurance is designed to pay the cost to defend the allegation and if defence is not available, pay the damages and the claimants legal fees. The company is more likely to be litigated against rather than the person, therefore the same level of cover is provided to the company as is afforded to the director or officer. The highest element of claims comes from past present and future disgruntled employees, due to breaches of employment law which has led to the employee taking legal action against the employer.

Trends to Watch

  • Online Advice – The internet provides a great wealth of “free” legal advice which encourages claimants to start legal proceedings against their employer, this is never truer when it comes to employment tribunals. Your organisation should be one step-ahead and protected against this online influence.
  • COVID-19 – The pandemic forced many organisations to make operational changes. Such changes can carry a variety of new or enhanced D&O exposures, leaving your business at risk.
  • Health & Safety Fees – These fees are enforced as interventions, fines and penalties for failing to adhere to COVID rules, risk assessments and the welfare of employees.
  • Furlough – The furlough scheme is important to be managed carefully within an organisation. The breach of furlough rules makes your organisation vulnerable to litigation.
  • Redundancies – When making an employee redundant, it can be unfair if not carried out in accordance with the strict letter of the law. If this employee has been working whilst furloughed, there could be both a civil and criminal case.
  • Insolvency issues – Claims related to insolvency have historically been one of the largest sources of D&O losses, exacerbated by The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent global recession. Insolvency-related D&O claims can result from stakeholders alleging that senior leaders failed to plan for financial disruption, putting them at fault for economic hardships. Insolvency rates have risen as many organisations struggle to make ends meet and in turn D&O claims have become more frequent.
  • Cyber-security struggles – Cyber-attacks continue to increase in both cost and frequency, which can result in more D&O claims. Specifically, stakeholders affected by a cyber-attack may allege that senior leaders failed to implement proper cyber-security measures or establish a plan for responding to an attack.
  • Employment Tribunals – Following the disbandment of up front fees for an employment tribunal in July 2017, there has been a surge of employment related claims made against the company and/or its directors personally.

Tips for Insurance Buyers

  • Examine your management insurance programme structure and limits alongside your insurance professionals. This way you can ensure your cover is appropriate whilst taking market conditions and trends into account.
  • Consider what is your and your fellow directors and officers net worth, considering houses, cars, boats, pensions, etc. The more you have, the greater you have to lose.
  • Consult insurance professionals to gain a better understanding of your management exposures and cost factors in the market. This way you can ensure your business is protected, properly.

 

For more information about management insurance, and how it can protect your business, contact your Konsileo broker today.

 

* Director defined by the companies act. If the director is not registered act companies house then they may still have a liability as an officer.

* Officer is presently undefined but generally relates to a person who has authority either expressed or implied, so managers are included within the description of insured persons.

* A stakeholder is a party that has an interest in a company and can either affect or be affected by the business, e.g. directors, shareholders employees investors, clients, suppliers, competitors, media, government agencies such as HMRC, communities.

Nick Taylor-Ward ACII Chartered Insurance Broker, Client Director – Midlands.
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Regulatory Update – Right to Rent Transition Period Extended https://konsileo.com/regulatory-update-right-to-rent-transition-period-extended https://konsileo.com/regulatory-update-right-to-rent-transition-period-extended#respond Mon, 17 May 2021 10:00:50 +0000 https://konsileo.com/?p=4176 Changes to right to rent checks, which were introduced in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, will now remain in place until 21st June. The emergency measures to reduce face-to-face contact, initially introduced in March 2020, were due to end in mid-May. However, the government has announced these will be extended to give landlords a longer period of time to adjust.

Right to Rent Checks Currently

From 30th March 2020, the government adapted right to rent checks to be performed by:

  • Requesting prospective adult occupiers to present a scanned copy or photo of their original documents from Lists A or B using a mobile app or via email.
  • Video Calling the prospective occupier and asking them to present the document on screen to check this against the copy sent.
  • Recording the date the check was conducted and marking a copy of the scanned documents with the phrase ‘an adjusted check has been undertaken on [insert date] due to COVID-19’ and if satisfied the tenant has a right to rent.

Landlords can continue right to rent checks via this method until 20th June.

Right to Rent Checks after 20th June

Pre-COVID right to rent checks will need to be made once again, after the current adjustions are ended. Landlords then must meet all prospective occupiers in person, as well as check one or two original documents from the goverment’s Lists A and B. If a landlord is confident that the original documents presented are genuine and identify the prospective occupier, a photocopy or photograph of the documents must be kept. A tenenacy agreement can now be signed, however copies must be kept until 12 months after the tenant has left their property. To help landlords record these checks, a new online system has been set up by the government during the pandemic. Entrants to the UK can enter their details, including a photograph, onto the government website. Access can be granted to landlords or their agent by the UK entrants providing a ‘share code’ and date of birth. Once landlords have access to these details, they must visit https://www.gov.uk/view-right-to-rent and verify the identity of the prospective tennant against the details available on their page.

Follow-up Checks

If an adjusted right to rent check was conducted by a landlord online during the COVID-19 pandemic, it was originally decided that follow-up checks must be completed in person once the pandemic’s restrictions had suitably ended. However, the extended length of the temporary restirctions has led to this plan being changed. Landlords will now not be expected to complete these checks.

FAQ’s

The government has provided answers to some FAQ’s following the recently announced extension to the right to rent check adjustments.
1. Will I be liable for civil penalty if I have only undertaken an adjusted check?
You will maintain a defence against a civil penalty if the check you have undertaken between 30 March 2020 and 20 June 2021 (inclusive) was carried out in the prescribed manner or as set out in the COVID-19 adjusted checks guidance published on gov.uk.
Should a tenant with a time-limited right to rent require a follow-up check after 20 June 2021, you must ensure the follow-up check is undertaken as set out in the right to rent code of practice and the landlords guide to right to rent checks available on gov.uk.
2. Can I carry out an adjusted check on a tenant before 20th June if their tenancy begins on or after 21st June 2021?
Yes – the temporary adjustments to right to rent checks will remain in place until 20 June. However, landlords should ensure the security and integrity of their right to rent checks.
You may wish to consider if there are opportunities to safely carry out standard right to rent checks as set out in the right to rent code of practice and the landlord’s guide in advance of the temporary measures coming to an end. Particularly where a tenancy agreement does not start until on or after the 21 June 2021.
3. What if my tenant does not have any or current documentation?
You should use the Landlord Checking Service if a prospective or existing tenant cannot provide any prescribed documents. This is available on gov.uk. During this difficult time, you must take extra care not to draw conclusions about an individual’s right to rent.
4. Does the criminal offence remain in force?
It remains an offence to knowingly let property to an illegal migrant.

For more information about the emergency measures and how landlord’s insurance could help you, contact your Konsileo broker today.

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Mental Health Awareness Week https://konsileo.com/mental-health-awareness-week https://konsileo.com/mental-health-awareness-week#respond Mon, 10 May 2021 10:58:07 +0000 https://konsileo.com/?p=4147 Mental Health Awareness Week

Organised by the Mental Health Foundation, Mental Health Awareness Week focuses on inspiring the UK to improve mental health. According to the Office for National Statistics, the proportion of adults experiencing depression nearly doubled during the pandemic. As such, this year’s campaign may be of particular importance.

The theme for 2021’s Mental Health Awareness Week is nature. As such, the Mental Health Foundation is encouraging people to take time out of their lives to enjoy the outdoors. There are a number of ways to enjoy nature that may benefit mental health, such as:

Visiting Green Spaces
Being amongst nature can help you relax. According to research by the Mental Health Foundation, 45% of people said that visiting green spaces had been vital to maintaining their mental health during the pandemic.

Growing and Gardening
Planting flowers or vegetables in a garden can help you feel productive, provide aesthetic pleasure to your everyday life and even potentially lead to a healthier diet.

Exercising
Taking a walk or hike through nature can encourage the release of endorphins and result in reduced stress or anxiety. Physical activity may also provide an oppurtunity for social interaction and could result in better self-esteem.

Bringing it inside
Studies have shown that even looking out of a window or watching footage of nature can boost your mood. During the pandemic, the Mental Health Foundation found that websites with footage of wildlife saw hits increase by over 2,000%.

Mental Health Awareness Week runs from 10-16 May. Visit https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/campaigns/mental-health-awareness-week for more information.

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Regulatory Update – Changes to Off-payroll Tax Rules https://konsileo.com/regulatory-update-changes-to-off-payroll-tax-rules https://konsileo.com/regulatory-update-changes-to-off-payroll-tax-rules#respond Thu, 06 May 2021 14:08:01 +0000 https://konsileo.com/?p=4133 On 6th April 2021, the new off-payroll working rules, also known as ‘IR35’, will go into effect. IR35 will apply in situations where a worker provides their services through an intermediary (eg a personal service company, a managed serviced company, a partnership or an individual).

In other words, the rules for engaging workers through contracted services are changing. While intermediaries are currently required to determine workers’ employment statuses for tax purposes in the private sector, IR35 will shift this responsibility to the organisation (client) receiving contracted services. Within the public sector, the majority of these rules are already in place. However, from 6th April 2021, public sector clients will hold additional employment status determination responsibilities.

These changes to the off-payroll rules were originally due to come into effect on 6th April 2020. However, this has now been delayed until April 2021 because of the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The delay is intended to help businesses and individuals deal with the economic impact of COVID-19. The delay to the introduction of the changes is not a cancellation.

Overall, these new rules will ensure that workers—who would have been considered an employee if they provided their services directly to their clients—pay broadly the same tax and National Insurance contributions as normal employees.

Who the Rules Apply to

The upcoming IR35 changes will apply to:

  • Public or private sector clients (including third sector organisations) that receive services from a worker through their intermediary and meet two or more of the following conditions:
  • An annual turnover of more than £10.2 million
  • A balance sheet total of more than £5.1 million
  • More than 50 employees
  • Agencies that supply workers to:
  • Any public sector client
  • Mid- and large-size private sector clients
  • Another agency that supplies a worker for public sector clients or mid- and large-size private sector clients
  • Workers who provide services through an intermediary

In addition to these circumstances, a simplified test also applies to some clients and considers annual turnover. That is, you must comply with IR35 if you are a client with an annual turnover of more than £10.2 million and are not:

  • A company
  • A limited liability partnership
  • An unregistered company
  • An overseas company

There are also rules that apply to connected and associated companies. If the parent of a group is medium or large, their subsidiaries will also have to comply with IR35.

If you are a small-size, private sector client that does not meet the aforementioned criteria, the workers’ intermediary will remain responsible for making employment status determinations.

How and When to Comply

Your specific compliance responsibilities under IR35 depend on your particular circumstance.

Clients

From 6th April 2021, all private sector clients that meet the aforementioned criteria must determine the employment status of workers who provide their services through an intermediary. You will need to do so for every contract you establish with an agency or worker.

When determining the employment status of workers, you must take reasonable care. Failure to do so will result in the worker’s tax and National Insurance contributions becoming your responsibility. In addition, you will need to:

  • Pass your determination and the reasons for the determination to the worker, and the person or organisation that you contract with.
  • Ensure you keep detailed records of your employment status determinations, including the reasons for the determination and fees paid.
  • Have processes in place to deal with any disagreements that arise from your determination.

If a worker or the agency paying the worker’s intermediary disagrees with the employment status you reached, you will need to take the following steps:

  • Consider the disagreement reasons provided to you by the worker or agency paying their intermediary.
  • Decide whether to maintain the determination if you feel it was correct and give reasons why, or provide a new determination if you feel it was wrong.
  • Keep of a record of your determinations and the reasons for them, as well as records of representations made to you.

You must provide a response within 45 days of receiving notification that the worker or agency disagrees with your employment status determination. During this time, you should continue to apply the rules in line with your original determination.

Failure to respond within 45 days will result in the worker’s tax and National Insurance contributions becoming your responsibility.

If you are a public sector client, you must continue to apply the current off-payroll working rules. From 6th April 2021, you must also comply with the aforementioned employment status determination responsibilities.

If you used the simplified test to determine your size, you must apply these rules from the start of the tax year following the end of the calendar year when you first met the aforementioned criteria.

Keep in mind that if you are also the fee-payer, you will need to deduct and pay tax and National Insurance contributions.

For further government guidance on IR35 compliance for clients, click here.

Agencies

If you are an agency that supplies a worker who provides their services through an intermediary to a client, the client will be responsible for:

  • Making an employment status determination to decide if IR35 applies
  • Telling the worker, your agency and any other labour provider they contract with of their determination, with reasons for making the determination

These changes mean that you as an agency could become liable for paying tax and National Insurance contributions if:

  • You’re the fee-payer.
  • You’re the fee-payer, but fail to pass on the client’s determination to the person or organisation that you contract with.
  • You’re the first agency in the labour supply chain.

For further government guidance on IR35 compliance for agencies, click here.

Workers

If you are a worker and your client meets the aforementioned criteria, it will be their responsibility to determine your employment status. You should be informed of their decision.

If your clients don’t meet the aforementioned criteria, however, your intermediary will remain responsible for determining your employment status.

For more government information on IR35, click here.

Contact your Konsileo broker today for additional Regulatory Updates and compliance guidance.

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Commercial Insurance Profile – May 2021 https://konsileo.com/commercial-insurance-profile-may-2021 https://konsileo.com/commercial-insurance-profile-may-2021#respond Sat, 01 May 2021 09:26:02 +0000 https://konsileo.com/?p=4162 Health and Safety Programmes in a Flexible Work Environment

As vaccines continue to be distributed and the UK attempts to reopen, many employers are planning to continue remote work. A study of approximately 1,000 firms by the Institute of Directors found that approximately 74 per cent plan to continue remote work policies that were started or expanded during the coronavirus pandemic.

It’s important for employers to understand that they remain responsible for the health and safety of their employees, even if they are not working on the organisation’s premises. This includes educating and training employees on potential risks that may have become more serious while working remotely – or that they may not have been personally responsible for in a traditional work environment – such as:

  • Fire safety – Employers may not be able to control physical characteristics of an employee’s remote work environment – such as building materials or wiring – but they remain responsible for at least educating their workforce on fire prevention and safety.
  • Ergonomics – In a traditional office environment, employees may be privy to desks, chairs and other equipment that is specifically designed for extended use. However, those working at home may be using less optimal workstations. With that in mind, it’s important for employers to educate employees on ergonomics and the dangers of musculoskeletal disorders.
  • Well-being and stress – While many employees report enjoying working from home, there are also many who have said it has been detrimental to their mental health. Managers should stay in frequent contact with remote employees and should inquire about stress levels regularly. Employees may not be forthcoming about any mental health issues, so it’s important to be observant of all behaviour.
  • Electricity – Employees may have had their workstations wired and set up for them in the physical workplace, but when working remotely, it may be up to them to arrange things. With that in mind, employers are responsible for educating workers on how to use electrical equipment safely. Organisations must also check equipment that is being provided to remote employees to ensure that it is safe and undamaged.

 

Global Poll Anticipates Reduced Business Flights Post-COVID

While organisations may be looking forward to getting back to business as usual, the coronavirus pandemic may result in some lasting changes for many employers. According to a YouGov poll of over 1,400 business travellers in the UK and six other European countries, 45 per cent responded that they expected to be taking fewer flights than they did prior to COVID-19.

In the UK specifically, 56 per cent of respondents said that they expected to continue to fly for work, but less frequently than before the pandemic. In addition, 4 per cent said that they expect to no longer take flights for work at all.

This potential reduction in business travel can be attributed to a number of different factors, including:

  • Videoconferencing software – Remote work has made organisations and employees more comfortable with conducting operations using videoconferencing. In the UK, 56 per cent of those surveyed in the YouGov poll attributed a reduction in post-coronavirus flights to an increased use of this type of software.
  • Environmental impact – In September 2020, the UK’s climate assembly called for a tax to be levied on frequent flyers. Research published by Global Environmental Change showed that 1 per cent of the world’s population caused half of the entire aviation industry’s carbon emissions in 2018.
  • Consistent productivity – Of the travelling UK employees surveyed, 60 per cent said that flying less during the pandemic has had no effect on their productivity. Twelve per cent said that they had actually become more productive.
  • Reduced costs – Flying to business meetings is both time-consuming and costly. Employees travelling for work-related purposes may also lead to a number of additional expenses, such as lodging and meals.

While an organisation may be able to save time and money by finding alternative methods for reaching overseas clients and partners, it’s also possible that getting on a plane may still be the best way to handle certain tasks. In addition, certain employees may still function best when conducting business face-to-face. For example, while 72 per cent of UK employees surveyed by YouGov said that flying less had had either no effect or a positive impact on their productivity, 28 per cent said that their productivity had decreased.

It’s important for all organisations to assess their own situations and operations regarding air travel in a post-coronavirus world. For more information, contact your Konsileo broker today.

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Motor Trade Risk Insights: Understanding the Electric Car Market https://konsileo.com/motor-trade-risk-insights-understanding-the-electric-car-market https://konsileo.com/motor-trade-risk-insights-understanding-the-electric-car-market#respond Wed, 21 Apr 2021 15:00:00 +0000 https://konsileo.com/?p=4137 Whenever a new technological advancement begins to change a market, it becomes necessary for affected parties to understand the transformation. In recent years, the UK has observed a measurable rise in the popularity of electric cars The number of pure electronic vehicles (EVs) registered in the UK nearly tripled in 2020 to over 108,000. In addition, while battery electric vehicles (BEVs) made up only 1.6 per cent of the new car market in 2019, that figure increased to 6.6 per cent in 2020. Part of the rise in demand for EVs may stem from a government timeline that aims to phase out internal combustion engine vehicles—such as those that run on petrol and diesel—by 2030. With that upcoming legal change in mind—as well as climate change becoming a more prevalent subject—it is important for both consumers and dealers to understand the advantages and disadvantages of these new vehicles.

The Benefits of EVs

There are many different benefits that EV owners can enjoy, such as:

  • Cleaner emissions—One of the most well-known advantages of EVs is how environmentally friendly they are. The batteries in these cars power both the electric motor and other electronics while not producing any waste material.
  • Reduced recurring costs—The initial purchase of an EV may cost more than that of an internal combustion vehicle, but afterwards, costs decrease significantly. Charging an EV can cost as little as one-tenth of what it would take to fill up a petrol or diesel vehicle.
  • Purchasing incentives—In addition to the reduced daily costs that EV owners enjoy, there are also other financial incentives for purchasing one of these cars, such as the government’s Plug-in Car Grant. This programme provides a £3,000 grant to those who purchase a pure EV that costs less than £50,000. Additionally, EV customers may be privy to favourable finance rates or free wall box charger installations as a further reward for committing to the purchase.
  • Tax benefits—EVs that cost less than £40,000 may also qualify for free road tax. Cars that exceed that price will be subject to a £340 a year tax for five years, but will become exempt afterwards. In addition, employers who use EVs can avoid any Benefit In Kind (BIK) company car tax. Comparatively, petrol and diesel vehicles may garner a 23 per cent and 27 per cent tax rate, respectively.
  • Reduced insurance premiums—In addition to other savings, EVs are now also cheaper to insure. According to industry experts, as of December 2020, the average premium for EVs over the preceding year was £629 compared with £718 for petrol and diesel vehicles.

In addition to these environmental and financial benefits, there are other incentives that EV owners may also enjoy, such as quieter engines and greater acceleration.

Drawbacks

While there may be many advantages of EVs, it is important to acknowledge that these cars also bear certain disadvantages, such as:

  • Required charging point access—In order to fully enjoy an EV, owners must have convenient access to a power supply. Many motorists in built-up areas, such as those who rent, may not have access to off-street parking and, therefore, cannot have a charging station easily installed.
  • Need to plan ahead—Much like smartphones and other electronic devices, EVs must be charged regularly. Unlike a petrol vehicle, which can simply be refuelled when necessary, EV owners must be sure to keep their car charged.
  • Limited range—Most EVs currently have a range of approximately 240 to 320 kilometres. While these vehicles may be more than suitable for the average UK commute, motorists taking longer trips may be apprehensive about access to necessary charging facilities during their journey.

In Conclusion

While EVs may have previously been seen as a trend, it is important to understand that this technology is here to stay. In the years to come, dealers, manufacturers and consumers will all need to get used to the ever-increasing popularity of electric cars.

For more information regarding motor trade risk insights and understanding the electric car market, contact your Konsileo broker today.

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HSE Safety Cornerstones – Preventing Workplace Falls From Height https://konsileo.com/hse-safety-cornerstones-preventing-workplace-falls-from-height https://konsileo.com/hse-safety-cornerstones-preventing-workplace-falls-from-height#respond Mon, 12 Apr 2021 10:11:04 +0000 https://konsileo.com/?p=4143 Preventing Workplace Falls From Height

Falls from height are among the most common causes of work-related injuries and fatalities in the UK. In fact, according to the HSE, falls from height have been the leading cause of fatalities in the construction, manufacturing and transportation sectors over the last five years. Additionally, during the same time period, falls from height have been the second-leading cause of fatalities in the agriculture, forestry and fishing industry. Preventing Workplace Falls From Height

Even outside of the aforementioned sectors, falling from height is a serious risk that must be properly managed. There are a number of precautions that employers should take to reduce the risk of workers falling from height. Consider these steps:

  • Minimise the need. Arrange the workplace so that common tasks can be performed at ground level. Assess other methods that might be possible substitutions for performing tasks at height, such as the use of extendable tools.
  • Install access equipment. When regular or frequent entry to an elevated area is required, employers should install permanent access equipment, such as steps or platforms with handrails.
  • Keep the workplace clean. Many falls from height stem from a worker slipping or tripping. When employees work at height, clutter and wet surfaces become even more serious hazards. As such, proper housekeeping should be practised.
  • Require proper attire. Employees should be instructed to wear non-slip footwear.
  • Issue personal protective equipment. When employees work at height, personal fall-arrest systems that are anchored to a high point can make all the difference in keeping them safe. Ensure that this equipment is in good condition and that employees are trained on how to use it properly.
  • Minimise potential accidents. In the event that a fall from height does occur, planning ahead can save lives. When employees work at height, consider installing safety nets and soft-landing systems, such as air bags.
  • Use ladders properly. Ensure that ladders are appropriate for the task at hand by assessing them to make sure that they can bear the intended load and are not leaned against weak surfaces.

Recycling Form Sentenced After Employees Become Trapped in Machinery
Stonegrave Aggregates Limited was fined £200,000 and ordered to pay costs of £48,952 after an incident left one employee dead and another seriously injured. The accident occurred when the workers were trapped inside of a revolving drum while attempting to clear blockage in a waste processing line. During that time, other employees—who were not aware of their colleagues’ whereabouts—restarted the machine. An HSE investigation discovered that the equipment had a history of blockages which required workers to enter the equipment. In addition, the machinery was not properly guarded to prevent access to dangerous areas, and the guarding that was in place was regularly bypassed by employees—including the site manager. The HSE also found that control systems—including emergency stop controls—were not compliant with relevant standards, and that management did not adequately enforce machine isolation procedures. In addition to the financial penalties, a director was given a 12-month community order and the site manager was sentenced to six months in prison.

For more information on keeping workers safe while they work at height, contact your Konsileo broker today.

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Regulatory Update – Electrical Safety Standards for Private Rented Properties https://konsileo.com/regulatory-update-electrical-safety-standards-for-private-rented-properties https://konsileo.com/regulatory-update-electrical-safety-standards-for-private-rented-properties#respond Mon, 05 Apr 2021 10:20:29 +0000 https://konsileo.com/?p=4150 Regulatory update: Electrical Safety Standards for Private Rented Properties

In June 2020, England implemented new regulations for landlords as it pertains to the safety of electrical systems and equipment. The new Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020 include a number of requirements related to inspections, safety standards and having necessary improvements completed promptly.

The government’s goal for these regulations was to force negligent landlords to take additional measures in order to keep their tenants safe. Through compliance with these new rules, officials hope to improve the private rented sector across the country and ensure that housing is safe and secure.

Requirements

The requirements within the electrical safety standards include the following duties that landlords must adhere to:

  • Making sure that national standards for electrical safety are met
  • Ensuring that electrical installations are inspected and tested by a qualified and competent person at least once every five years
  • Obtaining a report from the inspector, which contains results and a date for the next inspection
  • Providing a copy of the aforementioned report to any existing tenants within 28 days of the inspection or to any new tenants prior to occupancy
  • Providing a copy of the report to any local authority within seven days of a request
  • Retaining a copy of the inspector’s report that can be provided to future inspectors
  • Completing any remedial or further investigative work shown by the report within 28 days or less if specified by the inspector
  • Supplying written confirmation of the completion of any additional work to tenants and local authorities within 28 days of that work being completed

Affected Properties

With the new standards having come into effect on 1st June 2020, they are applicable to any new renters who began occupancy on or after 1st July 2020. The standards will also apply to previously existing tenants starting 1st April 2021. New tenancies are defined as those having been agreed upon on or after 1st June 2020.

Regulations apply to all private tenants who pay rent and occupy a property, including shorthold tenancies and licences to occupy. Furthermore, houses that are rented out by multiple parties and include shared facilities are also subject to the new rules. Click here for more information on specific types of tenants.

There are certain exceptions for various types of tenants, such as lodgers, tenants with lease agreements of seven years or longer, and residents of student housing and care homes. For a full list of these exceptions, click here.

Inspections

In order to satisfy the electrical safety standards, the inspections and tests arranged by landlords must be conducted by a competent and qualified professional. The electrical safety industry has established competent person schemes that can help landlords identify appropriate inspectors and testers. However, not all qualified and competent professionals are required to be members of these schemes. This means that landlords can also find a non-member and have them sign a checklist verifying their qualifications.

Standards that must be met during inspections are laid out in the 18th edition of the Institution of Engineering and Technology’s Wiring Regulations. Any fixed electrical parts of a property—such as wiring and sockets—must be inspected. Equipment that is permanently connected to electricity will also be inspected.

Specifically, inspectors will be looking for the following potential issues:

  • Overloaded electrical installations
  • Electric shock risks
  • Fire hazards
  • Defective electrical work
  • Lack of earthing or bonding

The new regulations do not apply to electrical appliances like cookers, refrigerators and televisions, but it is recommended that landlords regularly test any appliances that they provide for tenants. Any records related to these tests should be provided to tenants.

Reports

Following inspections, landlords will be supplied with reports that will indicate whether or not additional investigative or remedial work is necessary. If not, the landlord should supply copies of the report to tenants and, if requested, local authorities.

The following classification codes will be utilised by inspectors to indicate when additional work is necessary:

  • Code 1 (C1)—This code means that there is imminent danger and risk of injury. The landlord will be responsible for conducting remedial work.
  • Code 2 (C2)—This code means that conditions on the property are potentially dangerous and that remedial work must be carried out.
  • Code 3 (C3)—This code means that remedial work is not required, but that improvements are recommended in order to make the property safer.
  • Further Investigation (FI)—This code means that landlords are required to carry out further investigative work as soon as possible.

If remedial work or further investigation is deemed necessary, landlords have 28 days to do so. It is also possible that reports will require that landlords perform the recommended work within an even shorter time window. Once the work is finished, landlords must provide written confirmation to tenants and local authorities within 28 days.

Fines and Penalties

In the event that a local authority believes that landlords are not in compliance with the electrical safety standards, they may serve a notice that requires remedial action. If the landlord does not comply with the notice, local authorities can arrange for the necessary remediation to be performed and then recoup related costs from the landlord.

Landlords who are found to be in violation of these regulations may also be subject to fines of up to £30,000. Actions taken by local authorities may be appealed by landlords within 21 days. Depending on the local authorities’ decision, landlords may then appeal to the First-tier Tribunal.

In Conclusion

The new electrical safety standards are intended to ensure that private renters are housed in safe environments. The government hopes that the regulations will not create an additional burden for responsible landlords, but will only impact the operations of those who have previously been negligent regarding the safety of their tenants.

For more information, contact your Konsileo broker today.

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