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Questions about letter to difficult employer

(9 Posts)
MrsHuxtable Thu 06-Oct-11 16:26:01

So I need to tackle 2 issues with my boss.
The first and more important one is about my maternity leave dates and the fact that he's been refusing me my annual leave during my maternity leave year.
The second issue, minor but still important is that I have discovered that said boss has tampered with my holiday sheet to make out that I have had a lot more paid annual leave this year than I actually did. I can prove this with my wage slips. He also only gives us 4 weeks paid annual leave instead of the legal minimum of 5.6.

1. Will I write 2 seperate letters or raise both issues in the same one?
2. Will I post the letter/s or just leave it for him at work?
3. How firm will I word the issue about the manipulated holiday sheet? Should I keep it quite informal like I assume that the whole thing must be a misunderstanding? Should I already attach a copy of my wage slips for the weeks in question?
4. Should I print out and attach the relevant info about maternity leave and annual leave or does that seem over the top?
5. Can I insist on him replying to me in writing? I can't take any more bullying!

I've never had to write a formal letter to an emplyer so feel a little out of my depth...

MrsHuxtable Thu 06-Oct-11 16:28:40

Plus, English is only my third language so I feel very insecure about that as well...

vickibee Thu 06-Oct-11 16:33:19

The legal minimum is 28 days, four weeks plus 8 Bank Hols, if you get 20 days plus BH he is complting with the law.

I would photocopy a payslip showing the holidays you have taken and make out it is an admin error. It may be unwise to accuse deliberate manipulation. Is there an HR dept you could use and bypass your line manager?

MrsHuxtable Thu 06-Oct-11 16:44:20

No, I don't get bank holidays on top of the 4 weeks. It really is just the 4 weeks, I work bank holidays. And now he's trying to get around them too.

No HR department, he is the owner of the business.

vickibee Fri 07-Oct-11 11:14:11

If he is not complying with the law you can take him to an employment tribunal to seek redress. I would have to ask myself if I would wish to retun to work for someone like this after ML. You have nothing to lose by wrting your letter - maybe it would carry more clout coming from a solicitor?

MrsHuxtable Fri 07-Oct-11 16:43:32

I can't afford to get a solicitor at this point to write my letter. Stupidly opted out of the legal insurance thing that could have come as part of my home insurance at the time.
I have, however, spoken to one to find out my rights in detail and he also said I could go to a tribunal which I would most likely win (you can never guarantee these things). BUT my chances of winning would be a lot better if I can prove that I've been acting reasonable and have offered my boss different solutions to the maternity leave / annual leave situation in writing and he's the obvious unreasonbale person by vetoing everyting.
So, I'm writing this letter with a tribunal in mind but hoping I won't have to go there.

I also don't want to go back to this job but know that I might have to if I don't find anything else before ML finishes as otherwise I could not claim anything if I ended up without a job at all, which is not an option.
I have a feeling though, given the boss' s (sp?) behaviour so far, that he will somehow try and make me redundant upon return of ML anyway. Or maybe he's just hoping I won't come back. Either way, he wants me out but has so far not found a way to do so.

Does anyone have any answers to my questions in the OP though?

notabankersmum Fri 07-Oct-11 22:19:58

1. I would raise it in the same letter. Easier to deal with a letter with a brief intro, section on query 1, section on query 2, summary, and finally info on what happens next (I look forward to your reply, etc etc)

2. Post it, registered post, keep a copy of course. Also, start writing down details (your version of events - witnesses, dates and times of verbal agreements, printed copies of e.g. his emails - if they are in your work email account, i wouldn't put it past him to engineer a small "IT failure") ... just in case he tries to confuse you later down the line - you may have already started to do this.

3. Don't be explicit "you've knowingly falsified my timesheets" - make out there has been an error and you just want to see the data rectified as per your records - make your approach reasonable (even if you're fuming - anyone would be under these circumstances)

4. I would include it and reference it in the letter (please refer to attachment 1, attachment 2, etc)

5. see point 1, in your conclusion after the summary of issues raised, you should make it clear what you want to happen - you can request a response in writing (no need to say why - he'll know it's so that you have a written record rather than a verbal exchange, but no need to be explicit)

Note I'm not an employment lawyer or someone who's taken an employer to court or anything like that, but I have served as an admin assistant who worked closely with HR at a previous employer, and from seeing copies of internal memos/letters that dealt with employee issues, that would be the format that the team i worked on would usually expect. this was in a blue chip firm, but i don't believe it should be handled any differently based on the fact that your employer's business is so small - keep it factual, concise, well structured, and don't hint at any emotional / accusatory in the tone, IMHO.

MrsHuxtable Sat 08-Oct-11 16:59:56

notabankersmum Thank you so much. Your post was soo helpful.

LoveBeingAMummyAgain Sun 09-Oct-11 06:02:08

It might be worth looking at the yougov section on these ares, and if you want to print them out and include. You can also phone acas for advice.

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