Which kind of workplaces have rights on employee information and consultation?

Under the Information and Consultation of Employees Regulations 2004 (ICE), there are rights to employee information and consultation if you work for a company or organisation with more than 50 employees. Where the number varies, this is calculated as an average over the last 12 months. Some employers could choose to count part-time employees (those contracted to work 75 hours or less in a month) as half an employee for the purposes of this calculation.

The Regulations apply to public or private undertakings 'carrying out an economic activity, whether or not operating for gain'. Because of the reference to 'economic activity' the Government at the time believed that some public sector employees (mainly those who work for central government departments) would be excluded from the Regulations, but they introduced a code of practice to extend the rights to these employees.

If you are unclear whether you are covered by the Regulations, you should seek advice from your union if you have one.

Even if you work for an undertaking carrying out economic activity and with the required numbers of employees, these rights are still not given automatically. Various processes need to be followed to obtain these rights. In particular, groups of employees will need to trigger negotiations with employers.

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.