Government suspends gender pay gap reporting for 2019/20 tax year

Gender pay gap reporting has been suspended due to the coronavirus outbreak, it has been revealed.

The measure forms part of the Government’s emergency state package to help businesses affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to the Government Equalities Office (GEO) and the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), enforcement of the gender pay gap has been suspended as of today, Tuesday 24 March.

It means that no company is expected to report the salaries and bonuses of male and female employees for the 2019/20 tax year.

Introduced in April 2017, employers with 250 or more employees are required to publish statutory calculations every 12 months showing how large the pay gap is between their male and female workforce.

Last year, final calculations showed that fewer than half the UK’s biggest employers “succeeded in narrowing” the gap, with around 45 per cent of firms, in fact, widening the gap in favour of men.

Commenting on the move, Minister for Women & Equalities, Liz Truss, and EHRC Chair, David Isaac, said in a joint statement: “We recognise that employers across the country are facing unprecedented uncertainty and pressure at this time. Because of this, we feel it is only right to suspend enforcement of gender pay gap reporting this year.”

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) and Companies House have also recently revealed that businesses should ask to delay corporate deadlines, such as accounts and financial reporting, should they be unable to meet them.

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