TUPE stands for “Transfer of undertakings (protection of employment) regulations 1981” it has recently been updated so now stands for “Transfer of undertakings (protection of employment) regulations 2006” the law has been amended in 2014 and again in 2018, with various provisions within the 2006 regulations have altered.
The TUPE regulations are in place to preserve employee’s terms and conditions when a business or undertaking is transferred to a new employer.
The regulations have been put in place to protect the employer from being dismissed and to ensure that the employee’s terms and conditions are followed.
It is in your best interests not to opt-out of TUPE, if you do your employment is treated as immediately terminated and you would lose the right to claim for unfair dismissal.
For the employee TUPE is an entitlement and is not an obligation, this could have a negative effect though and your existing employer could decide they do not have enough work for you and you could be made redundant.
The purpose of TUPE is basically to protect employees when a new business takes over from an old one. Its effect is to move any employees from the old employer to the new employer by operation of law.
Your new employer is not allowed to reduce your salary or change other terms of the workforce just to bring them in line with lower wages being paid to its existing workforce, this would most definitely be a breach of TUPE.
If you refuse to be part of the TUPE process your rights will become very limited, you may be able to negotiate a new contract and a new role with the new employer. An employee can object to a TUPE transfer, you do not have to give a reason but if this is done the employment will be treated as the employment is coming to an end on the date of the transfer.
Some various helplines and websites offer free information on TUPE and its procedures.