Data Protection – New guidance on information transfers under TUPEMonday, June 16th, 2008
The Office of the Information Commissioner has published a new “good practice note” on the data protection issues that employers must consider when transferring employee information under the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 (TUPE).
TUPE ensures that employees’ terms and conditions of employment are preserved when a business or undertaking is transferred to a new employer. To achieve this, the Regulations require that certain information is provided to the new employer before the transfer takes place, such as details of pay, contracted hours, holiday entitlement and any disciplinary or grievance action relating to that employee. The Data Protection Act does not prevent the transfer of this information as it is a requirement by law. However, both parties must comply with the Act when handling the information, for example ensuring it is accurate, up-to-date and secure.
Employers should consider the data protection issues early in the transfer process and only pass on the information that is required by the new employer. The employees concerned should also be told that their personal information is being given to the new employer unless that is prevented by insider trading restrictions.
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