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Employment solicitor(26 Posts)
How do I go about finding a good employment solicitor? I need some advice from one, possibly to proceed to a "no win no fee" type of arrangement. My boss isn't paying me holiday pay. I've been to citizens advice. I've talked with my boss ("I just don't pay holiday pay"), written to her with a date of over a week ago to respond (she ignored it), I've messaged her about it and I've asked for another meeting with her this week. She's ignored it all.
It's getting pretty stressful. I need to leave and am wondering if I can claim constructive dismissal. I've only been there 11 months but I think you can claim this if under 2 years employment and they are breaking statutory regulations, which she is with no holiday pay.
She also is not registered with the CQC and legally needs to be. She had no Employers Liability Insurance until I insisted on seeing the certificate last week and she then took it out and sent me a copy.
Help! I need to leave and need good legal advice.
Where are you based? I can look some up in the Legal 500 or Chambers (which ranks people/firms) for you.
I think you’d find it an uphill battle arguing that not paying holiday pay constitutes constructive dismissal.
The good news is putting in a tribunal claim for the holiday pay should be very straightforward and you shouldn’t need a solicitor.
I know a great one in East Sussex. Message me if you are near there
ksa I think I remember your situation some time ago where you highlighting to her that she doesnt have Employer Liability insurance. She has continued to ignore you throughout.
Sorry to sound negative but I'd honestly suggest you go and work for a different company. Please don't waste your hard earned income on trying to drag her kicking and screaming to doing the decent thing. She is flouting the very basics of Employment law and you would be well advised to spin on your heels and walk away.
By all means lodge a claim at ET as its free. The gov Tribunal website is easy to use. But you'll find she's highly likely to get very unpleasant with you and your working relationship will rapidly deteriorate. Escape and live to tell the tale, sorry.
The fact she only provided you with the EL certificate after you pestered her shows she's being passive aggressive. A worthy Employer would follow good practice and display the certificate prominently, not produce it under duress after their employee called them on it.
Thanks for the replies. I'm in Wiltshire.
I'm planning to leave pretty soon. I will claim the unpaid holiday through ACAS Early Conciliation, then most likely Tribunal.
I'm just unsure whether to resign through Constructive Dismissal. I know very few of these cases are successful.
She's not answering any messages or emails regarding holiday I would like to book. I have asked for a meeting this week but she's not replying. She's also reduced my workload this week (I get paid by the half hour).
Keep an accurate tally of holiday dates, including any you're about to take so you can be specific on your Early Conciliation documents and on ET 1 if she refuses to capitulate during EC period.
Use whatever approval process she has in place to request and gain approval for holiday / absence so you work to the rules - even if she doesn't accept she has to pay you holiday pay you need to demonstrate adherence to the protocol.
If she continues to ignore you re holiday approval despite numerous attempts on your part to engage, it will make her look even worse at EC / ET! If she responds verbally only, then you can go back in written form and say "thank you for your verbal approval of my holiday dates, xx - returning yy, just confirming here for the record"
Re constructive dismissal, I wouldn't advise it. Very costly and technically complex plus very stressful. Find a job where you are happy and fulfilled.
I think you should do as you’re planning, in order to pursue your unpaid holiday pay.
However, you’d need 2 years’ service to pursue a claim of constructive dismissal.
Pursue getting the money that’s owed to you, get a new job, and put this pitiful excuse for an employer behind you. Best of luck.
I understand why you would be considering constructive dismissal. You feel hacked off that she's doing this and you feel forced into a corner. Seriously though, for your sanity, just claim the holiday pay through ET, find another job and put this behind you. It's quite frankly not worth the angst or the emotional stress.
Thanks again everyone for the support and comments. I've got a quiet day off today and am pondering.
I most likely won't go ahead with the constructive dismissal. I thought that if it was for a statutory infringement, it's exempt from the 2 year rule? Statutory including legal holiday entitlement.
Daisychain, she has no written procedures or policies. But the usual way of working is for us to message her requesting holiday and she messages back agreeing it. A slight irony is that I booked a weeks leave ages ago, then 2 weeks before I realised my colleague was also off that week and I kindly offered to change my week. So wish I had't bothered!!
" I thought that if it was for a statutory infringement, it's exempt from the 2 year rule? "
There is case law regarding this where an employee was dismissed for complaining about non-payment of wages, but nothing I can find where an employee with less than two years' service wasn't actually dismissed for complaining about it but still successfully claimed that something similar was constructive dismissal in itself.
That's not to say it wouldn't be successful but it is not clear cut and wouldn't be easy and would be very unlikely to be worth bothering with, particularly if you get a new job and therefore your financial losses from being dismissed are very little.
ksa you did the decent thing by changing your dates so that's in your favour in terms of you being a good employee. You are the bigger person.
Do you not get paid holiday or not get holiday pay? I don't get paid holiday but holiday pay is incorporated into my hourly rate. Perfectly legal
"I don't get paid holiday but holiday pay is incorporated into my hourly rate. Perfectly legal"
Nope. Rolled up holiday pay is unlawful, even if the OPs employer was doing that, which she isn't. The OP's employer has said she 'doesn't do paid holiday' or something along those lines.
Having an inclusive rate ie with holiday pay added to your hourly rate used to be a thing, especially when paid via an agency.
It isn't good employment practice to do that, because it means holidays aren't reinforced as being a good thing and often it encourages staff to work work work and not take time out to recharge. Good practice is all about a healthy workforce, with some degree of work life balance - just saying to bear that one in mind, sugarhunny your employer's isn't reinforcing that message particularly well if your holidays taken are 'invisible'.
It's perfectly legal. I've spoken to acas before I signed my contract. As long as the hourly rate is at least minimum wage plus 11.7% (off the top of my head, it may be slightly different) and your employer is open about it then there's nothing illegal about it.
Oh I see. Government website must be completely wrong then...
It is lawful (although terrible practice) to pay separate holiday pay amounts each month/week to be set-off against future holiday taken. It is absolutely not lawful to do as you describe, which is to incorporate holiday pay into someone's hourly rate.
Yes, my employer has stated in writing "I don't pay for holiday leave". It's a flat rate per hour I get.
My payslip (and contract) state £x per hour which incorporates £y holiday pay. To pay £z per hour inclusive and to state it as such would be unlawful, but unlikely to be challenged. It suits me this way but I don't work full time so holidays aren't an issue
@ksa103 that is unlawful. Even if your hourly rate includes 12.07% (checked it now) for holiday then it must be broken down on your payslip
when did the change to rolled up holiday pay happen?
I have this and it really works for me as my company is really flexible about my hours and means I can take odd hours off here and there (rather than half days) and can easily take more days than I'm entitled to (taking any excess hours or days unpaid)
@CountingToThree it's a grey area for the reasons I've stated above. If it's broken down on your payslip it's not an issue, otherwise it is unlawful and you could challenge it.
It works for me as well.
Ksa, your employer openly stating they don't pay statutory holiday pay is shocking and I hope you do manage drag them into the 21st century and get your rightful paid leave. It gives a strong message they cannot flout the Law and get away with it. You'll be doing a favour to the unfortunate people who have to continue working for the company, hopefully they'll all jump ship like you.
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