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Predictable working pattern requests

The Workers (Predictable Terms and Conditions) Act 2023 provides a statutory right for certain workers and agency workers to request a more predictable working pattern, subject to certain eligibility criteria.

The process to follow when dealing with these requests will be similar to that already in place for statutory flexible working requests, although unlike flexible working, the request must be dealt with in its entirety within one month of it being submitted.

This Act is not yet in force, although this is expected to happen approximately one year after the Act gained Royal Assent. Secondary legislation is needed before this can happen.

Key things you need to know about Predictable working pattern requests:

  • The right to request a more predictable working pattern has been introduced to address the one-sided nature of casual worker agreements, where employers don’t have to offer work but may do so on short notice.

  • Workers will need to have 26 weeks’ service with the employer to make a request under this right.

  • This will also be available to agency workers.

  • Workers will be able to make two requests a year, unless they submit a flexible working request for a more predictable working pattern; in that case, the flexible working request will also count as a predictable working pattern request.

  • The law provides seven grounds under which a request can be refused.

  • Failing to deal with a request properly, or subjecting a worker to a detriment for submitting a request, are grounds for a claim before an employment tribunal.