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Instant Dismissal

(5 Posts)
nerfbullet Sat 10-Nov-12 13:45:41

I worked for a small family run business for a total of approx 4.5 months as a cashier two days a week. I made a few mistakes in this time which were pointed out to me in a casual manner. These were 1. the float not being correct, (you transfer cash from the top of the till to the bottom to obtain change) however it all added up to the correct amount, just once I hadn't put a note to the bottom of the till. 2. I charged someone for one item and had 3 items delivered, this was rectified quickly since they knew the customer. 3. I charged someone for one item instead of 4 (he changed his mind at the last minute whilst I was serving him and was then interrupted)and this was rectified as above. As I say it is a small family run business in a fairly small community and so they know most of their customers and so on both the last two occasions recovered the money without any fuss. The mistakes were casually pointed out, but told to be careful and of course I took them seriously and made a concerted effort to be on my guard. The other shop staff assured me that mistakes were inevitable, especially when busy and that they had all done it and not to worry. Two weeks ago on a Wednesday I pointed out to them that they had been overpaying me by one hour a day; I had discovered this the night before. I offered to make up the overpayment by working extra hours for them. Two days later on the Friday one of the owners of the business telephoned me out of the blue and said "I am sorry but we are going to have to terminate your employment as you have made too many mistakes". I was flabbergasted! I queried if it was down to the TWO mistakes they had pointed out (undercharging) she said yes but that they didnt know how many more mistakes I had made and that this was the other reason! She said I needn't go in the following week they would pay me a month in lieu to save my embarrassment! She also said she would waiver the overpayment. Two days later I received my monies and the overpayment had been taken out, leaving me pretty much with one months wage. I queried this but they said I had misconstrued this information. I was very upset and angry about the casual unprofessional way I was treated. I have a very strong feeling that as they are very quiet at the moment they were looking just to get rid of me and I believe I have not been replaced and so feel this may have just been a convenient way to do it. I know I have no legal rights for unfair dismissal as have not been there long enough but the CAB have encouraged me to write a letter airing my grievances that they did not follow the correct procedure in my contract ie 3 written warnings...none of which I had. She said I may have ground for suing in a small claims court. This I do not want to do, I just want to have my say and let them know what bad practice it is treating people in this manner and not following company procedures. This is a very popular shop in a small community as I say, and I have many friends and family who are equally upset about how I have been treated and so they have lost a big chunk of their custom from this action. Just wondered if anyone in the know had any thoughts on this? Sorry for the very long ramble/rant!!!

hermioneweasley Sat 10-Nov-12 16:18:13

I am sorry nerf. I don't think the CAB's advice is good - you have nothing to gain by setting your complaint out in writing, and you have no right to 3 warnings etc. you might possibly have a claim for unfair deduction from wages which you could pursue through tribunal. It depends what your contract says about them being able to claim back for mistakes.

nerfbullet Sat 10-Nov-12 17:55:12

Ah ok herm....wonder what the point of dismissal procedures is then. If nothing else it will make me feel better as felt I didn't have the chance to have my say. Thanks for your advice tho x

flowery Sat 10-Nov-12 18:14:20

Agree with hermione.

The point of dismissal procedures is to ensure those people with the relevant length of service aren't unfairly dismissed, as well as ensuring no one gets dismissed for certain automatically unfair reasons.

In your case, a 'fair dismissal' constitutes being given enough notice. There is no need for your employer to even give you a reason for dismissal at this stage if they prefer not to.

Your employer didn't make you come in an work your notice, which they could have done.

Would you really have preferred to have gone through a stressful lengthy disciplinary procedure? What would you have wanted your employer to do differently?

Brugmansia Sat 17-Nov-12 09:02:12

Just to add to the above I have doubts about the CAB advice on a potential small claims case. If you are owed anything under your contact you can go to the employment tribunal, either a wages claim or breach of contract.

You have received notice though and if I understand correctly you agree you were overpaid. In general they can recover an overpayment by deducting it from wages.

The other thing to check though is whether you've had all your holiday entitlement. You'd have accrued this during the time you were working. If you hadn't taken all you had accrued you should be paid in lieu of the amount outstanding on dismissal.

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