EU legislation set to come into effect in the UK in 2013 will mean that it will be compulsory for all employees who drive on company business to have regular sight tests.

Regardless of age, all commercial licence holders will be required to have a sight test every five years and for private licence holders every 10 to 15 years.

Howard Hughes, spokesperson for Simplyhealth said: “Although this is not due to come into effect in the UK until 2013, it is important that employers consider the implications that this legislation will have on their business now.

“Employers will have a responsibility to ensure that all employees driving while on company business undertake regular sight tests. Although the employer is not obligated to pay for employee sight tests, it does have a requirement to ensure employees adhere to the new legislation. For example, by implementing a policy which records the dates of employee sight tests, employers will be able to demonstrate that they are complying with the new EU ruling.

“Many employees may need support with meeting the cost of sight tests and glasses if they’re required. Employers could therefore experience greater pressure from employees to cover this additional cost. By introducing an affordable option, such as a health cash plan, employees can claim money back for sight tests, and cover the cost of glasses up to an annual limit.

“A cash plan also helps to cover the costs of trips to the dentist and for complementary therapies such as physiotherapy which help support everyday health needs. Our Simply Cash Plan is just £1 per employee per week and includes a 24 hour helpline. Plus for a small additional cost of 15p per employee per week the plan can include face to face counselling services and support for managers.”