The Working Time Regulations imposes strict limits on working time in relation to minimum rest periods, rest breaks, holidays and limiting working time. There is restricted ability for employers to validly exceed these limits, however employers are able to ask their workers to opt out of the 48 hour maximum working week by getting them to sign an opt out agreement.
There are significant penalties for employers who do not observe the 48 hour maximum working week and who do not have opt out agreements in place. Therefore, where there is a possibility that a worker may exceed a 48 hour maximum working week then it is crucial that an opt out agreement is put in place. See, Working Time Regulations: 48 hour opt out agreement in the document section. However, employers should also be mindful of not subjecting employees to a detriment for agreeing to the opt out, or withdrawing their consent to this.
M1 – Working Time Regulations – 48 hour opt out agreement
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