As an employer, under the Working Time Regulations 1998, you must take all reasonable steps to ensure workers do not work more than the maximum weekly limit on working time. This is an average of 48 hours per week, taken over a rolling 17-week period (subject to a degree of flexibility in certain circumstances). However, employees may choose to opt-out of this limit on working time.
This document is an opt-out agreement to be signed by the employee. It provides for:
- the opt-out to be from the start of employment or from another date
- the opt-out to be indefinite or for a fixed period
- the option to extend the statutory minimum notice to withdraw the consent
For more information regarding the maximum working hours limit, see “What are the maximum hours you may work?”.
Maximum weekly hours - opt-out agreement
Take our guided online interview to quickly and simply create a maximum weekly hours opt-out agreement based on your answers. Then, download and print your document ready for use. Or share the document with someone else using Simplify the Law.
Key information you will need to have to hand when creating your opt-out agreement:
Employer and employee details
- The employer’s name and address
- The employee’s full name and address
- To whom should the employee return the opt-out agreement after it has been completed? This may be the job title of the individual to who the agreement should be returned, or the name of the relevant department within the company. E.g. the managing director or the human resources department.
- From when do you want the employee to opt-out and for how long? For example, do you want them to opt out indefinitely from the start of their employment, or from a specific date after their employment has already begun? If the latter, you will be asked to provide the date on which the opt-out will start. Additionally the letter will allow you to specify a fixed period for the opt-out.
- What is the date of the opt-out agreement? (This will be the date on which the agreement is signed)
- Do you want to specify a notice period, above the statutory minimum of 7 days, that the employee would be required to give in the event that they wished to withdraw their consent to the opt-out? If so, this period cannot exceed 3 months.
- If the employee does wish to withdraw their consent, to whom should they send their written notice?
As an employer, you can refuse to hire an individual who declines to sign an opt-out agreement. However, you cannot dismiss an employee or subject them to any detriment if they refuse to sign or choose to withdraw their consent to the opt-out.