Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you have any legal concerns we suggest you consult a solicitor.

Disability or constructive dismissal?

(47 Posts)
windchimes23 Wed 01-Jul-15 21:11:45

So I have a couple of options. I can call disability and get 2/3 of my salary for 5 years. Or go for constructive dismissal.

I am bipolar I, plus other issues. I've always functioned until the last year. I was only diagnosed in December after 9 years of good service. No sickness of note.

I hate my job. I went back after sick leave to a verbally promised promotion, it was given to someone else. Announced in a team meeting without my prior knowledge. I was also refused overtime and out of hours call out, basically a third of my salary gone without question.

They have refused to pay my contractual baby bonus. Said I didn't notify them despite email evidence.

They forced me to attend a physical social event (think running around and jumping about) at 32 weeks pregnant, it was a 70 mile journey each way in 30 degree heat. I had a major bleed two days later and was hospitalised and put on bed rest for the rest of my pregnancy. They contested this and tried to insist my maternity leave started immediately.

I'm now on a phased return after a bad bout of rapid cycling bipolar and have been told 'sort it out yourself'. HR are uninterested, and rude TBH.

I freaked out last week and ended up IP again. I've not disclosed I'm IP again yet but need to make a decision tomorrow as I'm over self cert time.

WWYD? Disability or quit and claim constructive dismissal?

LibrariesGaveUsPower Wed 01-Jul-15 21:14:05

I think you are confused about the legal claims. you need some real life advice.

Disability and constructive dismissal are not either /or claims.

On what basis would you get 2/3 of salary for 5 years?

windchimes23 Wed 01-Jul-15 21:19:20

Canada Life employee assistance, bipolar is covered.

windchimes23 Wed 01-Jul-15 21:22:47

If I claim constructive they will give me a very good pay off assuming I win.

The forced social event is enough to claim. Removal of car allowance, overtime and OOH support also add weight to the claim.

Verbal promotion talk won't win me anything, I'm aware of that. But stress involved in unpaid baby bonus and undue care for phased return act in my favour.

LibrariesGaveUsPower Wed 01-Jul-15 21:25:06

You mean you think you would get signed off to claim on the disability insurance long term?

That is a pretty big gamble I would say. Most of these policies will be contingent on you being and remaining unfit for work (including elsewhere ) and can be very rigorous.

Do you want to not work for 5 years (or more likely, until the insurance settle with a lump sum) if successful?

LibrariesGaveUsPower Wed 01-Jul-15 21:28:09

The forced social event is not necessarily enough for cd . It would depend on all the evidence. Not to say it wouldn't. But one thing is rarely certain in cd.

Can you afford court fees?

windchimes23 Wed 01-Jul-15 21:30:41

I can take them to court, but it wouldn't get to that. They 'protect' the brand.

windchimes23 Wed 01-Jul-15 21:32:29

I emailed HR and said I'm pregnant, it's June, it's hot. I feel unable to do a 140 mile round trip and compete in a sports events.

The reply was 'it's mandatory'.

Viviennemary Wed 01-Jul-15 21:33:39

I don't think it would be as easy as you say to get this five years on full pay. I'd say you certainly have a claim against them for insisting you take part in that event. If you are in a Trade Union you could ask their advice. Either option could be a long difficult process and you might not get the result you want.

LibrariesGaveUsPower Wed 01-Jul-15 21:35:15

Thing is, just doing something shitty to an employee does not prove cd.

LibrariesGaveUsPower Wed 01-Jul-15 21:36:23

Also, how long ago was it? You have to accept a breach.

I really think you need real life advice. Trade union. Acas. Cab.

windchimes23 Wed 01-Jul-15 21:49:51

Trade Union lol, private company. Largest credit/debit card provider in the world.

I shall seek legal advice. Making a pregnant woman attend a sports event and then the subsequent near loss of her child? Nice.

They have continuously lied to me and can not provide evidence despite my email trail.

As for the five years, erm yeah I'm entitled. Already been told that by GP and Psychatrist. Bipolar I is covered by Canada Life disability. Obviously I'll go in if not manic or depressed, but after nine months of hell I'm struggling. Been back a month, all advice from OH has been ignored.

Just got told to step up and take a role three grades higher without a promotion. Was brave enough to say no but freaked out and ended up IP again.

LibrariesGaveUsPower Wed 01-Jul-15 21:54:09

You are entitled to five years if you are incapacitated within the meaning of the policy for that period. Not because of a diagnosis at this point in time though. You do get that? Do you actually want to be effectively on sick leave for the next five years?

LibrariesGaveUsPower Wed 01-Jul-15 21:56:06

Yes. Please take advice. Discrimination claims are brutal mud slinging affairs. Even if they settle.

Have you raised a grievance formally?

windchimes23 Wed 01-Jul-15 21:58:41

I'm speaking to OH on Friday. Then I'll raise the formal stuff. I'm hoping OH will support me. But who knows, they work for the company hmm

LibrariesGaveUsPower Wed 01-Jul-15 22:01:29

Support you on what? Surely they will advise on phased return?

windchimes23 Wed 01-Jul-15 22:07:13

They sent letters to HR advising phased return. HR said not our problem, sort it out yourself.

OH advised informal meeting before return, just got text from line manager and said come in as normal and we can chat after.

They have ignored all advice from OH. I'm hoping they will support me hmm

titchy Wed 01-Jul-15 22:07:20

You'd only get five years if a Canada Life appointed specialist agreed you could not work due to your disability for five years. You'd be continuously assessed - Canada Life would NOT want to pay out and would do their best to claim you were able to work. Believe me they won't just pay you for five year on the basis of your GP and specialist's views. The bar is very very high. You really need to be aware of that, and consider cd instead. You also need to consider the toll to your own mental health.

Document everything, get someone else to check what you've written and make sure it reads coherently. Don't put any emotion into your statement. And yes seek specialist legal advice. Your own household insurance may pay some of these costs.

LibrariesGaveUsPower Wed 01-Jul-15 22:10:22

I am really sorry for what has happened to you.

But you still haven't answered. OH will support you on phased return. They won't support (or oppose)either a legal claim or an insurance claim. That is not their role.

Why the passive aggressive hmm. I honestly am trying to be helpful

windchimes23 Wed 01-Jul-15 22:14:19

I have been diagnosed with Bipolar I, PTSD, OCD and GAD.

The documents are in line, they have already accepted diagnosis but I stupidly went back to work.

I thought it would make me feel better. I wanted to try and get better. More fool me.

LibrariesGaveUsPower Wed 01-Jul-15 22:18:11

What is your maternity package like
? You must be close if you were 32 weeks in June.

Honestly, having seen cases up close, I would also add a third option of taking your mat leave, enjoying your baby and looking for something better afterwards. smile

butterfly133 Wed 01-Jul-15 22:22:38

Sounds awful! I would get legal advice. Did all this poor treatment start after your diagnosis? Constructive dismissal sounds more likely. I guess they might offer you a good chunk of change to avoid issues whereas disability would be a different route.

windchimes23 Wed 01-Jul-15 22:23:22

Passive aggressive sorry I didn't mean to come across as that.

I was told by HR that I was to manage my own return to work.

I just wanted some support, like a meeting before to set up hours and a plan?

I'm not aggressive I swear, I'm in bits. I'm sad that no one at work is supporting me and I've ended up under huge pressure and full hours with no one who cares.

I want to work, I have worked for my whole life. Things just fell apart and they didn't even call or email me hmm

The only contact HR made was to send me an invite to the Christmas Party.

I give up now. I'll get legal advice, I guess it's appropriate.

LibrariesGaveUsPower Wed 01-Jul-15 22:26:30

I am sorry. You are going through such a hard time. I should have been gentler.

Right, what I would always say to a client is to think first what you want. Do you want to go back there? Work elsewhere? Not worry until after your baby is born and bigger?

Decide what you want and then see if you can make it happen. smile

windchimes23 Wed 01-Jul-15 23:08:47

Babies are born, 1 and 3. I want out ASAP as I feel I've been penalised for having children.

My salary has been cut, my benefits removed and my job is now basically admin where before I was the technical lead.

I feel aggrieved, but perhaps I should just accept it. Should I take legal advice?

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now