Forbes Solicitors
Regulatory eNews
April 2020

What are your RIDDOR requirements to report to the HSE in light of COVID-19?


Meet the team - Emma Swan


Audit of Furlough Arrangements – Have you got it right?

What are your RIDDOR requirements to report to the HSE in light of COVID-19?

Following on from the recent article on COVID-19 Risk assessments, the Health & Safety Executive (HSE), have provided further guidance on the reporting requirements under 'The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013' (RIDDOR).

A report should only be made under the RIDDOR regulations when:

  • An unintended incident at work has led to someone's possible or actual exposure to coronavirus - In such circumstances, this must be reported as a dangerous occurrence. The example used by the HSE is where a lab worker accidently smashes a glass vial containing coronavirus, leading to people being exposed.
  • A worker has been diagnosed as having COVID-19 and there is reasonable evidence that it was caused by exposure at work - This must be reported as a case of disease and exposure to a biological agent. This could for example apply to Health Care Professionals who contract COVID-19 after treating patients with COVID-19 whether that be in hospital or a social care home setting.

Regulatory Roundup

  • Construction firm fined by HSE after worker suffers serious injuries in fall from height
  • Gate manufacturer fined after girl crushed by school steel gate
  • Company and director fined and sentenced for failing to comply with HSE notices
  • CQC fines nursing home provider for failure to provide safe care at nursing home

Read more


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Morrisons are not Liable for Actions of a Rogue Employee

The Supreme Court ruled in favour of Morrisons Supermarkets in relation to a large data breach claim, brought by a group of employees whose personal information had been posted online by a disgruntled employee.

The employee, Andrew Skelton, was a member of Morrisons Internal Audit Team who had been tasked with transmitting the payroll data of the entire workforce to external auditors.


Coronavirus Bill

The Bill is designed to provide the Government and the authorities with wide ranging powers to respond to the current health crisis. It will cover the following areas:

  • Workforce
  • Easing Pressure
  • Limiting Contact
  • Controlling Borders
  • Sick Pay

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Forbes secure acquittal of defendant charged with assaulting Duty Manager

Craig Mackenzie, a Criminal Defence and Regulatory solicitor at Forbes, recently secured the acquittal of a defendant charged with assaulting a Duty Manager at Iceland stores.

He argued during the trial that the actions of the Duty Manager who had detained the defendant as a suspected shoplifter were unlawful and in fact constituted an assault on him. As a result, the defendent was entitled to use reasonable force to get away.

The Court agreed and he was found not guilty.

This case highlights the potential difficulties business owners can face when dealing with such situations.



Regulatory Roundup cont...

  • Waste management company fined after banksman suffers crushing injury
  • Waste management and packaging company fined after worker was injured

Read more


Read more

Audit of Furlough Arrangements – Have you got it right?

Over the last few weeks we have produced a significant amount of guidance on the Corona Virus Job Retention Scheme and the process and requirements for furloughing staff. The Government guidance has been changed several times and has been quite contradictory in part. The claims portal has now opened and hundreds of thousands of businesses have submitted claims for their furloughed staff.   

We understand it is HMRC’s intention to pay out all of the properly submitted claims immediately but will then retrospectively audit a large number of these claims. If businesses are found to not hold the proper paperwork, do not have adequate justification for furloughing, or have calculated the claim incorrectly HMRC will seek to recover the payments. 

Given that one of the requirements is to hold paperwork relating to these claims for 5 years, they appear to be anticipating the audit process will take a considerable amount of time. Businesses therefore need to ensure that they are ready for this audit now and remedy any potential issues whilst the employees remain furloughed.

Forbes are offering a fixed fee audit of your furlough arrangements to ensure they are compliant with the legislation and current guidance. We will advise you on any areas which need addressing, potential issues with your claims and we can provide a pre-prepared report to provide to HMRC in respect of these payments, should you be audited.

Please contact Amy Stokes on 0333 2071157 or email

Meet the team:

Emma Swan - Partner & Head of Commercial Employment

Emma has considerable experience advising and assisting private sector clients, from local SMEs to large multinational PLCs. She has particular expertise in the manufacturing and construction industries and has supported numerous clients with regulatory employment matters, including:

•Engaging with clients at a strategic level advising on employment aspects of restructures, transfers, mergers and acquisitions;

•Advising on TUPE, with particular expertise in service provision changes;

•Highly experienced advocacy in Employment Tribunal cases, appearing in tribunals throughout England, Wales and Scotland;

•Managing day-to-day HR issues, particularly involving discrimination; and

•Providing practical and strategic training to business owners, Directors, Management and HR teams.

The employment team assist and support with equal pay audits, HMRC National Minimum Wage audits and are launching a new service to provide support and advice for businesses to prepare for HMRC audits on CJRS/furlough scheme.

0333 207 1154 |

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