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The Working Time Regulations 1998: Guidance on the legislation

Appendix 3: Dutyholder and strategic factors to be taken into account when determining the enforcement conclusion following non-compliance with the working time regulations

NB: This table provides additional guidance on some of the factors contained in EMM Tables 6 and 7.  The full table must be referred to when considering the enforcement conclusion in a particular situation.

Dutyholder factors Guidance
Is there history of relevant written or verbal enforcement against the duty holder? This should be considered in terms of any previous contact with the dutyholder on WTR issues. In particular have they been given previous advice on the actual aspect of the Regulations in question?
Is there relevant incident history? This is not relevant in the context of these Regulations
What is the standard of general conditions? Consider in terms of the extent of the non-compliance with WTR. Is it an isolated incident eg relating to only a small part of the workforce or does it apply across the board?
What is the inspection history of the dutyholder? Unless it is proposed to take action under both WTR and health and safety legislation, these factors should not be considered.
Strategic factors Guidance
Does the action coincide with the public interest? The EMM considers this in the context of the public expectations of HSE and also how we target resources based on risk.
Are vulnerable groups protected? This will be particularly relevant when considering young workers and situations where special hazards, etc are an issue.
Is the functional impact of the action acceptable? This is considered in terms of the impact on the workers themselves. Because of the fact that working hours determine how much people earn, it is possible that a reduction in hours could have a considerable impact., it is important that we point out to employers that the law itself allows a reasonable amount of flexibility (e.g. relevant agreements).
Updated 2014-02-28