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Can we change our employees' contracts in order to alter our pay structure?

We are a GMS Practice. We have not implemented Agenda for Change as none of the Partners have been trained in AfC. Most of our staff were employed with Whitley pay scale giving them an annual increment regardless of performance.

We are thinking of moving to an appraisal linked pay where employees would always get inflation but not necessarily an increment. If we change their contracts, is this a breach of employment law?

We gave a bonus 2 years ago but were advised that if we repeated this, it would imply "established practice" and would have to be repeated annually. We are in a no man's land between obsolete Whitley and are not AfC trained.

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