Surge in Flexible Working Requests Expected

April 2, 2024

By Fflur Jones

On 6 April, the law relating to flexible working requests will change. This is happening at the same time as a raft of other employment law changes. We’ve set out the full changes coming into force in April here.


What is changing?

From 6 April, the following changes will come into force:

  • The right to make a flexible working request will become a day one right. This means that, unlike at present where employees must wait until they’ve been employed for at least 6 months before they can make a request, from now on they will be able to request to work flexibly from their very first day in the job.
  • The number of requests that an employee can make in a year will double. At present, an employee can only make 1 flexible working request in a 12-month period. From 6 April however, employees will now be able to make 2 requests in a 12-month period.
  • The time that an employer has to respond to a flexible working request will reduce by a third. At the moment, employers have 3 months to respond to a request, but from 6 April, employers will only have 2 months.

What impact is this likely to have?

In the past year or so, our employment solicitors have already seen a considerable increase in clients receiving flexible working requests. One of the reasons for this is the re-adjusting working landscape following the pandemic, with employees used to greater flexibility and employers looking to bring more employees into physical workplaces more often. These April changes however are likely to cause a further increase.

 What should you do right now?

  • Update your flexible working policy to reflect the new laws. Get in touch with us if you need help with this.
  • Ensure that your updated policy is kept somewhere accessible to staff – e.g. as part of a staff handbook on an intranet or shared folder.
  • Ensure that your managers and HR teams are familiar with your processes for dealing with requests (e.g. through training and good communication). This is the best way to ensure a consistent approach to requests. After all, a real legal risk arises when flexible working requests are dealt with inconsistently.
  • Seek legal advice with any tricky cases – e.g. where a request presents discrimination. An example might be when a flexible working request is made in connection with someone’s disability.


If you require any further advice on flexible working requests, contact a member of our employment team, Fflur Jones on 02920 829 117 or for a free initial chat to see how we can help you.

Contact Our Team
Bríd Price
View Profile
Damian Phillips
View Profile
Fflur Jones
Managing Partner
View Profile
Fiona Sinclair
HR Consultant
View Profile
Heledd Evans
Trainee Solicitor
View Profile
Nicole Brendel
View Profile
Owen John
View Profile
Rachel Ford-Evans
Senior Associate
View Profile
Seren Trigg
HR Consultant
View Profile

I have worked with Darwin Gray for a number of years and the level of service, professionalism and timely response is second to none. I would highly recommend Darwin Gray to any business.”

Becs Beslee
Dice FM Ltd

Darwin Gray have provided us with a first-class service for many years now. They really take the time to understand our business and develop relationships which results in advice and support that is contextualised and effective.”

Rebecca Cooper
ACT Training

We have worked with Darwin Gray for several years and have always found their services and advice to be first class.”

Karen Gale
Stepping Stones Group

An extremely professional and sincere company who make time for your queries and understand the need to break down certain facts and information to ensure everything is understood perfectly. I would highly recommend the company to anyone looking for any type of legal advice”

Gwawr Booth
Portal Training Ltd

PSS has worked with Darwin Gray for many years. We have always received an excellent service. Prompt and professional advice and support.”

Ledia Shabani
Property Support Services UK Ltd

We have used several departments within DG recently and we have been very pleased with an effective, efficient and down to earth service. Very happy thus far and I expect that we will continue to use DG.”

Guto Bebb
Farmers’ Union of Wales

Darwin Gray offer us truly superb services. Very professional, quick and services available bilingually which is very important to us, highly recommend.”

Iwan Hywel
Mentrau Iaith Cymru

My “go to” in urgent and time sensitive cases for direction, support and advice. The team are quick to respond to calls or emails for advice and support on all matters. Always explain complex matters in a way a lay person can easily understand.”

Margot Adams
Guarding UK Ltd