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Can they do this?

(17 Posts)
bottersnike Mon 15-Dec-03 19:06:02

Until starting maternity leave a few months ago I worked full time from home. I sent a request to work a few weeks ago asking about the possibility of returning part time.
They have said no, not because of the part time element, but because, they say, the job can no longer be done from home.
So, my job is still open to me, but I have to work from the office.
The office being a very long way away, this is completely impossible, especially with childcare to arrange.
Can they do this? Any legal minds out there? I would like to know I'm in the right before giving them a piece of my mind.

motherinferior Tue 16-Dec-03 08:22:10

I think they can't, but don't take me as gospel. It's totally out of order IMO.

FairyMum Tue 16-Dec-03 08:31:34

In my experience they can do more or less what they like. The law is so vague and open to interpretations anyway, and unless it is in your contract.......? Sorry....

twiglett Tue 16-Dec-03 08:33:47

message withdrawn

motherinferior Tue 16-Dec-03 08:57:05

Call the EOC too.

Batters Tue 16-Dec-03 09:28:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

sis Tue 16-Dec-03 09:40:10

Bottersnike - no they bloody well can't just do that without giving very good reason for the change!! Definately get some legal advice because even if it wasn't in writing, your contract, in practice, was one in which you worked from home and changing an employee's place of work is a pretty big step for an employer to take and must be done with full consultation. Good luck and let us know how you get on.

dadslib Tue 16-Dec-03 09:41:18

Message withdrawn

bottersnike Tue 16-Dec-03 09:42:08

Thanks for the suggestions.
Unfortunately my contract doesn't stipulate working from home, and they say it was only a concession on their part ( ignoring the fact that I've worked there for years! )
It just doesn't feel right that they are in effect going to force me to resign.

twiglett Tue 16-Dec-03 10:03:05

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sis Tue 16-Dec-03 10:30:15

Bottersnike, Twiglett is right - contractual terms do not have to be in writing. If you do something for your work for any length of time then it becomes contractual by 'custom and practice'

prufrock Tue 16-Dec-03 12:47:41

Is Dadslib right that they can take back any maternity benefit over and above SMP? I thought thye could only do this if implicitly stated in your firms maternity policy that they reserve the right to do so?

LIZS Tue 16-Dec-03 12:55:57


I too thought they could only take back any extra if it was stated beforehand that it was subject to your return to work and also they could stipulate a minimum time for which you must return.

GreenSanta Tue 16-Dec-03 13:00:02

Message withdrawn

sis Tue 16-Dec-03 13:38:58

Prufrock, you are right, the employer must state the conditions for contractual maternity benefits very clearly.

bottersnike Tue 16-Dec-03 19:13:42

That's not an issue as I didn't get anything over and above SMP!
I have a meeting with them this week so I'll let you all know how it goes.

twiglett Sat 20-Dec-03 10:08:03

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