I'm a month away from returning to work at a small firm and having a few issues. Despite verbally promising a number of things both pre and during maternity leave, including face to face, with a month to go my boss just emailed and has gone back on practically everything agreed. In exchange for flexible working (dropping my days from 5 to 4) she's asking me to sign a new contract which doesn't include key rights from my first - these include right to share in profits and rights to equity in the company - she's also trying to do things like increasing my notice period.
One of the reasons I took the job 4 years ago was for these and because we'd always agreed I would work 4 days after returning, I have arranged childcare accordingly. Therefore it's not as simple as saying I will just go back 5 days. And I also want to see my baby at least one day a week.
Not only is what she's doing unfair, I've been advised it's also illegal. People have the same rights if they're working part-time as if they're working full-time. Essentially she's a bully - funnily enough, she's also a mother!
We have no HR department to go through and the company is very small and I'm the next most senior person. Any advice anyone could give me would be appreciated.
I'm not an expert but I seem to remember that if you change your conditions under flexible working legislation, such as working less days, then it constitutes a completely new contract so I suppose she's trying to renegotiate other bits of it too?
Is she making your contract different from other full time workers or is she trying to renegotiate it so it is similar to new starters for instance? If it is the first then she can't do it, if it's the second I'm not so sure.
Thanks - as I understand it (and as I suggested to her) we could create an addendum to the contract that stands that just has my new hours/days and new holiday allowance etc. Everything pro-rata. There's nothing in my first contract that says it needs to be changed/expires if I go on mat leave. I'm happy to meet her in the middle on some things but I don't think she can force me to give up the things I came on board for 4 years ago just because I'm doing different days?
It sounds like she's just trying it on while she can. If everyone has different contracts though it might be hard to prove she's treating you less favourably than other colleagues. I'd stick to your guns and see what she does.