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Impending Tribunal

(16 Posts)
user1471677144 Sun 16-Apr-17 08:26:59

Back in January I found out that my bosses ( I have 3) employed one of their wives friends. She was paid 5k more than me doing a lesser job than me. I have been with the lads for nearly 4 years and an almost a qualified accountant. As part of my role I allocate the salaries and it seemed high so I questioned it. The director (who isn't normally in the office) went mad, accusing me of discussing wages with staff, asking me what was I going to do about it, what did I want, it was horrendous. I came out in tears, anyway to cut a long story short I handed in my notice, I felt I had no choice. This happened on the Friday, on Monday when I went in there were two directors there, they asked to see me, told me they were accepting my notice and could I clear my desk immediately. I'm still totally gutted by how I've been treated. A friend in HR got in touch and told me to speak to her friend who is a solicitor, she advised of unfair constructive dismissal. We put a case forward, there was also some sexual harassment according to my solicitor due to one of my bosses asking me how often I had sex plus some other stuff. My worry is a) going to court as it seems it's coming to that and b) I think it's quite likely that my boss has recorded conversations in the office (he's that type), could this be used against me ?? I have def said stuff in the past about them as they treat staff terrible but does this affect anything in court ?? I'm reluctant to go down the sexual harassment path as no one will back me as they are too scared.
Any comments would be greatly received. At the moment I'm still to upset to look for a job, I've totally lost my confidence.

Ginmakesitallok Sun 16-Apr-17 08:31:36

Sorry you are in this position, but I don't think you will win at tribunal. They can pay people what they like (as long as it's not discriminatory), and you handed your notice in. I don't think you can claim sexual harassment as fron your post it looks like you never raised it as an issue when you were there? Why do you think it was constructive dismissal?

insancerre Sun 16-Apr-17 08:33:37

I am sorry this has happened to you
But, I'm not sure what you expect to happen
You handed your notice in and they let you go without working said notice
I presume they paid for your notice period?
I doubt the sexual harassment claim will stand up if you didn't raise it with anyone at the time
I think you would be better putting your energy in to looking for a new job

NapQueen Sun 16-Apr-17 08:35:37

If they are paying you your notice then theyve done nothing wrong or illegal.

Amummyatlast Sun 16-Apr-17 09:00:27

I'm puzzled by the suggestions that there is absolutely no claim here. Paying notice doesn't stop there being a constructive dismissal claim. A breach of the duty of mutual trust and confidence (such as going ape at the OP) can entitle a person to resign and claim constructive dismissal. That said, whether there is enough her for a successful constructive dismissal claim is another matter, but the OP's solicitor should have advised on that.

daisychain01 Sun 16-Apr-17 09:44:13

The case at tribunal will be weakened by the absence of a grievance being raised and handled internally by HR/management.

If you reduce 25% of the award, if (and im only speculating) the tribunal rules that due process had not been executed, then the actual award could be entirely swallowed up by legal and tribunal costs. If you havent completed 2 years service then your only possibility is discimination due to a protected characteristic which you are not planning to do.

OP although this has been awful for you I would try to move forward quickly and continue on your career path in a different organisation. It would be detrimental to your existing stress levels and your finances to take an action against them frustrating tho that is.

I would hope that the advice you are receiving from your solicitor is realistic so you don't invest time effort and money on something that is unlikely to benefit you and your career long term.

daisychain01 Sun 16-Apr-17 09:54:11

Apologies you said you've been there 4 years.

Your allegation is bullying which should have been highlighted internally as stated already.

You could speak to ACAS - if you go to tribunal you have to firstly go through Early Conciliation process. Your employer may just stiff-arm ACAS and "send them packing" though, if they feel strongly they've done nothing wrong.

What has your solicitor said about your chances?

Hoppinggreen Sun 16-Apr-17 09:58:53

Sounds awful but it's really none of your business what your bosses pay to other people - presumably you were happy with your wage before you found out someone else was getting more?
Then you resigned and they accepted
Not sure what your case would be but then I'm not anemplyment lawyer.
You need flowery or one of the other experts.

insancerre Sun 16-Apr-17 10:00:18

All of this happened in January and you are still too upset to look for another job?
Have you spoken to a doctor or anyone about this?
The longer you are not working the harder it will be to get another job

Why not start looking now
Look on indeed and start applying
Get your self esteem back by getting another job

JustHereForThePooStories Sun 16-Apr-17 10:15:33

(salary) seemed high so I questioned it

With whom? If it was with other/another member(s) of staff, that may be construed as gross misconduct.

I'm struggling to see your case here, to be honest. If I've read your post correctly, this all played out over the course of less than a week. I can't see how it meets a claim for substantiated bullying, or constructive dismissal.

If I was to guess, and correct me if I'm wrong, you spotted that this woman was on a higher salary than you, felt aggrieved, spoke to others about it, were reprimanded by a director for this, things got heated, you resigned, directors felt you were a liability for your notice period so are paying you in lieu.

Also, you said you were pursuing unfair constructive dismissal. Which one? They're two very different things. For unfair dismissal, the onus is on a company to prove that they did not dismiss somebody outside of fair and natural justice (i.e., policies and procedures clearly set out), or equality/protected disclosure legislation.
In this case, you resigned so I don't think a court will look at unfair dismissal.

For constructive dismissal, the onus is on the employee to demonstrate that there was no other option for them but to resign, typically following a period of harassment, and having exhausted all other channels (company's grievance procedure, mediation etc). Again, I'm struggling to see that here, but accept the timeline may be much longer than I've picked up in your post.

Best of luck, OP. Will you post after the hearing- I work in this area and always interested in case studies.

user1471677144 Sun 16-Apr-17 10:18:22


We have been down the early conciliation route so it looks as though court is impending. It wasn't that the other employee is being paid more than me, it was how I was treated. I was shouted at, I was asked what I wanted to happen, did I want them to match the pay... I said I didn't know I needed to think about everything. Then the next day, the Friday he asked to see me again and said what did I want ?? I said I though it fair for them to match the other salary. He immediately said " I'm telling you now I won't match it and the other two will back me".
There was no compromise, no exit interview, nothing. I have worked for them for nearly four years, I started part time but they needed me full time as someone left. I gave up studying to help them out for a while. I did above and beyond what was expected so it's been very hurtful. My solicitor feels he goaded me into leaving as I had stood up to him. I suffer with depression and anxiety, I'm being referred re possible Asperger's so those of you that suffer will know that it's not quite so easy as just getting on and looking for another job. I am looking and have an interview today, it's having the confidence and the trust in people now and also my own abilities. I just wondered if anyone had been through something similar and had experience.

JustHereForThePooStories Sun 16-Apr-17 10:23:57

I suffer with depression and anxiety

Were the company aware of that?

Ginmakesitallok Sun 16-Apr-17 10:24:33

So he said they wouldn't match the salary and what happened next? Was that the point you resigned? No point in telling you that that was a mistake.

daisychain01 Sun 16-Apr-17 10:32:49

user147 i am concerned that you are paying a solicitor and that they have not highlighted your chances of success at tribunal which several posters have highlighted here as being low. The risks are highly stacked against you.

Key point is what happened when you went into the 1 month Early Conciliation phase? EC is an important barometer in the negotiation process as to whether your employer is worried about tribunal.

If their attitude is "see you in court" then you would do well to see it as a clear warning sign they will put up a fight.

Given you have MH challenges how strong do you feel. You are best placed to know that.

dietstartsmonday Sun 16-Apr-17 10:33:14

Constructive dismissal is the hardest to prove and I don'tv think you have a great case here tbh.
You resigned over a salary they accepted. The fact they weren"t willing to pay you the salary may be based on relevant duties etc. We don't know at this time.
I would move on and forget it. A tribunal is extremely stressful and you have very little chance of winning here

caroldecker Sun 16-Apr-17 10:40:03

A tribunal, whether you win or lose, will affect your ability to get a new job.

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