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Employer wants to increase my hours from part time to full time - where do i stand

(7 Posts)
happymyrtle Wed 26-Sep-12 21:20:50

I have worked for my firm for 12 years - 6 years being full time and the last 6 being part time (2 days a week and every third saturday), with 2 lots of maternity leave.

I have now been asked to increase my hours to as near as possible to full time, which i cannot do either

a) practically - i have a 4 year old who is not at school yet and whose nursery cannot increase his days, and the breakfast club and after school club at my other son's school is full.
b) emotionally - i want to be as involved as possible with my children and whilst i was prepared to work part time for financial reasons, i do not wish to work full time.

my employers await my decisions about increasing my hours, but advise that they are not making me redundant.

where does this leave me? do i just tell them that i cannot increase my hours and leave the ball in thier court? viz any potential benefit claim - how do i protect myself?

any advice greatfully received.

Rockchick1984 Thu 27-Sep-12 08:53:16

I can't advise on if they are allowed to do this.

Regarding benefits if you were to leave your job, are you a single parent? If so, you are entitled to choose not to work until both children are in school. Prior to that you would get income support, child tax credits and housing benefit. If you are living with a partner any benefits would depend on his income.

Wigeon Thu 27-Sep-12 08:57:46

I'd look at Citizens Advice for this. I have found this page, which says:

"Changing your hours of work
A change in the number of hours you work can have a large impact on your work-life balance. Sometimes, the operational needs of the company you work for may make it necessary to change the number of hours that your work. Whether you work full time or part time however, any changes your employer wants to make to your employment contract must be agreed with you.

It is possible, if you are a part-time worker and your employer insists that you work full time it could constitute indirect sex discrimination."

and then there's a link to a page about sex discrimination.

Acas might well have some info on their website, and they also have a helpline for workplace related issues like this:

Call the Helpline on 08457 47 47 47.
Monday-Friday, 8am-8pm and Saturday, 9am-1pm

Wigeon Thu 27-Sep-12 08:59:30

This looks like a useful leaflet from Acas on "varying a contract of employment", which is what your employer is trying to do.

Wigeon Thu 27-Sep-12 09:00:46

Oh, and are you a member of a union? Might be worth having an informal chat to your local rep, about your exact situation, if you are.

WildWorld2004 Thu 27-Sep-12 09:11:46

I would ask them to put everything in writing. How many hours they expect you to do, if you dont increase your hours you will still keep your current job/hours.

Also you need to be careful because if you leave a job you may not be able to claim benefits for a few months.

Rockchick1984 Thu 27-Sep-12 09:18:20

Wild that's only applicable re benefits if she left once both DC's are in school, when she would be required to be actively job seeking.

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