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dh's company trying to change terms and conditions - dh not happy!

(10 Posts)
paddingtonbear1 Fri 01-Aug-08 19:45:35

dh's company has new directors. There is a new employee handbook, where quite a few of the terms and conds have changed - some new added. I don't know all the details but dh and his colleagues are not happy. There's stuff in there like if you are late 3 times in a month, you will be docked pay - atm they don't do fixed hours so how would that work?? Also, the company can dock holiday entitlement if they want, and employees can't use the internet at all (even in lunch hour) for anything except work. I guess this last one is pretty normal - except it's an IT company!
The pay isn't great at this company, but their terms and conds have always been fair before. Everyone has to sign the new ones, to say they accept them, but they don't want to! What happens if they don't? Does it make any difference?

edam Fri 01-Aug-08 19:49:53

no idea, sorry, but suggest you look up the ACAS website for relevant employment law.

AvenaLife Fri 01-Aug-08 19:50:22

If he signs then he's legally agreeing to the new terms and has re-negotiated his contract. Does he have a union that he can get advice from first?

If he doesn't sign then he can't be bound by the new terms but this could piss his boss off.

paddingtonbear1 Fri 01-Aug-08 19:56:57

he's not in a union. None of his team are prepared to sign. Somebody said that even if they don't, if they continue working there it could be taken as read anyway - not sure if this is true or not.

RuthT Fri 01-Aug-08 19:59:38

You can't unilaterally change the terms and conditions of employment they should be consulting about this.

He can be bound by them if he continues to work at the company as it would be implied acceptance.

Is there a staff representative he can go to?

If there is no collective consultation process and no staff rep he should as a first port of call write all his concerns issues down and send them to HR stating that they are unacceptable. The more he can get to do this the better.

This may be helpful from ACAS

www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=816

How can contracts be varied?

An existing contract of employment can be varied only with the agreement of both parties. Changes may be agreed on an individual basis or through a collective agreement (ie: agreement between employer and employee or their representatives).

An employer who is proposing to change an employee's contract of employment should fully consult with that employee or his or her representative(s) and explain and discuss any reasons for change.

Variations of contract can be agreed verbally or in writing. It is preferable for any agreed changes to be recorded in writing.

Where a variation in the contract has been agreed and the changes concern particulars which must be included in the written statement of terms and conditions, the employer should give written notification of the change to the employee, within a month of the change taking effect.

AvenaLife Fri 01-Aug-08 20:03:34

They should be able to collectivly sign a letter stating that they are unwilling to sign the new contract. In cases where a employee has no written contract of employment, a tribunal can look at what the employee does at work to determine the contract instead. This, however, is a offer to re-negotiate the contract of employment so they don't have to sign if they are unhappy with the terms and conditions. If they sign a letter stating that they are unilling to sign the new contract then this should override any assumed signature of the contract so should in theory cover them.

I think he needs to get together with his colleagues and find an employment solicitor for some accurate and professional advice though. smile

paddingtonbear1 Fri 01-Aug-08 20:07:51

Thanks Ruth, I will show dh this. There hasn't been any consultation so far, and he only knew about this today.
There is now a HR person - there wasn't until recently (it's a small company).

paddingtonbear1 Fri 01-Aug-08 20:09:15

The collectively signed letter is a good idea - thanks!

juneybean Sun 03-Aug-08 17:19:58

I could be wrong but if he continues to work for them he is in effect agreeing to the terms of the new contract???

flowerybeanbag Mon 04-Aug-08 09:40:55

Paddington these are quite handy and user-friendly, here about changes to terms and conditions, what happens, and here about what happens and what to do if you don't agree.

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