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Sacked for being off sick

(17 Posts)
thinkingaboutfostering Wed 12-Oct-16 17:29:26

I have been working on a zero hours contract for a care agency for the past 8 months or so. Over the last couple of months my health has deteriorated and I have recently been diagnosed with early endometrial cancer. I have been signed off for the past few weeks as my health had become too unpredictable to be able to be scheduled to work.
A few months earlier I had a minor disagreement with the management over their handling of a situation and their inability to get my pay correct for several months in a row. I was quite unwell at the time and snapped as they had left me without pay and were unwilling to rectify their mistake. It took for me to threaten legal action before thy paid up. They proceeded to hand me a written warning regarding this.
Since then I haven't had much work through them and then I reduced my hours due to sickness and then finally when off sick. Then on Monday I went into the office and had a back to work meeting with one of the managers. All was fine and he said that they would issue me a rota for today. Nothing came through and then in the post this morning I received a letter saying that they were terminating my employment due to my conduct and behaviour!?
Really don't know where I stand on this. Surely I should have at least been given some notice th hat they were thinking I'd dismissing me?

Wolfiefan Wed 12-Oct-16 17:31:16

But the notice says you weren't sacked due to being ill but for conduct and behaviour?!

thinkingaboutfostering Wed 12-Oct-16 17:35:14

But I haven't been at work? Nor have I contacted them in anyway other than to keep them informed about my health!

LIZS Wed 12-Oct-16 17:35:48

Within 2 years they can just let you go except under specific circumstances. Does your contract allow for any notice? I suspect you gave little comeback.

HermioneWeasley Wed 12-Oct-16 21:57:46

It sounds like you may have been dismissed for asserting a statutory right (in this case, your right to be paid in acccordance with your terms and conditions)

But given your hours and length of service, any compensation would be minimal. Is it worth the fight?

daisychain01 Thu 13-Oct-16 07:01:03

From their perspective they see you as a problem and just want you off their books. Sorry you have obviously got significant health concerns, unfortunately they don't care about that sad

Hindsight, threatening to take them to court over your pay discrepancy wasn't a good idea. Could you not have just shown them your time sheets which is a verifiable record of hours worked?

If you're on a zero hours contract, don't they just say they don't need you anymore, or am I missing something?

HermioneJeanGranger Thu 13-Oct-16 11:09:53

Thing is, you don't have a huge amount of comeback here. You've only been working there for eight months and are on a zero hours contract. The cost (both financial and emotional) to fight it would be so much more than any compensation you might get - is it worth the hassle?

And no, they don't have to give you notice, I don't believe.

thinkingaboutfostering Thu 13-Oct-16 12:10:29

I think part of the reason I'm so pissed off is that a so called friend is one of the managers there.
I did go through all the pay slips and things with them but they consistently screwed up my tax so I was paying higher rate tax on all my hours despite me spending hours talking to hmrc and making sure they had the right tax codes and up to date info. They refused to talk to hmrc or to use the information I provided. In the end I was left with £20 in my account and bills to pay so had no choice but to threaten them.

LIZS Thu 13-Oct-16 12:31:05

Mixing business and friendship often doesn't work. The tax code is generated by hmrc so you should probably blame them for the mix up.it doesn't sound as if this was a significant source of your income recently anyway. Your face clearly doesn't fit. Better to accept and move on. Concentrate on your recovery.

thinkingaboutfostering Thu 13-Oct-16 13:55:42

Liz's it's my only income!

LIZS Thu 13-Oct-16 14:02:16

But presumably you've had no income from them while you've been ill anyway. Can you claim esa?

LIZS Thu 13-Oct-16 14:02:21

But presumably you've had no income from them while you've been ill anyway. Can you claim esa?

justicewomen Thu 13-Oct-16 14:18:15

I think, subject to specific evidence, you need to get advice on whether their actions (in apparently terminating your contract and w/o a disciplinary process) constituted discrimination arising from disability under the Equality Act . You are disabled if you have a physical or mental health problem which has lasted or is likely to last at least one year and causes you substantial (i.e. not trivial) difficulties in day to day activities (which as you have taken sick leave from work is entirely possible). Your employer need to have been told or should have known you were disabled. It is not an easy claim to make but worth exploring.
Ring Equality Advisory and Support Service on 0808 800 0082 or contact a local Law Centre. There is still legal aid for discrimination but you have to go through the legal aid gateway on 0345 345 4 345

thinkingaboutfostering Thu 13-Oct-16 14:58:07

I should have been getting ssp but they haven't paid it. Because of the nature of the work it's paid two weeks in arrears from the final day in the 4 week cycle. So I have only just started not having money from them.

Redpony1 Fri 14-Oct-16 13:28:03

they consistently screwed up my tax so I was paying higher rate tax on all my hours despite me spending hours talking to hmrc and making sure they had the right tax codes and up to date info. They refused to talk to hmrc or to use the information I provided. In the end I was left with £20 in my account and bills to pay so had no choice but to threaten them.

It's almost impossible to screw up tax these days at employer level. HMRC issue codes and it can take a week or 3 to come through to the payroll dept/provider, by this time it may miss the payroll cut off date etc. I am a payroll manager, i do not call HMRC for employees tax issues - that's their problem to sort out. I also cannot use 'information provided' such as letters to employees from HMRC etc. I can only use the P6/P9 notifications from HMRC direct to me, not via employee.

You may not have qualified for SSP. You don't just 'get' it. the qualifying period for earnings might have been when you started reducing hours down etc. It's not a given that you get SSP.

thinkingaboutfostering Fri 14-Oct-16 14:09:09

I have it good authority from hmrc that they had done the corrections at their end. Work refused to use the changed tax code!!! So yes they are at fault.

Why would I not qualify for ssp?
According to this I qualify
https://www.gov.uk/statutory-sick-pay/eligibility

HermioneJeanGranger Fri 14-Oct-16 14:22:03

I think you just need to accept you've had a lucky escape and get a new job, OP.

They sound like a bunch of cowboys, but you also can't afford to fight it it by the sounds of it, so why not just chalk it up to a bad experience and move on?

My old job messed up my tax codes, and I got a refund through HMRC, not through my employer. It took a few weeks but they put the money directly into my account and sent me a confirmation letter a couple of days later.

Have you gone on the HMRC website and filled out the forms to change your tax code?

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