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Employment help Long sorry

(20 Posts)
Confusedcoconut Tue 28-Jul-15 15:33:50

I need some advice pretty fast please. I started a new role last month. Signed all contracts and was told I'd get a copy. Didn't get a copy after for one several times. Last week I was terminated due to the fact I hadn't done as well as they expected. I was told I would get a full months salary this month. I asked for that in writing and again a copy of my contract that I've signed. I was told they would send both to my home address or email. That was last Wednesday.

Fast forward to yesterday I received an email from them saying they're finalising all paper work and monies and that could I return their laptop and charger.

I replied:

Thank you for finalising the paperwork can you confirm as agreed by yourself I will receive a full months salary and copy of my contract.

They replied today:
I will be sending you a copy of your contract today I will only be paying you up to and including the day you left. If you wish to discuss why this good will gesture has been retracted please contact me.

I called acas as this doesn't sit right with me. They were surprised my contract still hasn't been handed to me even though I signed all the pages. So I replied:

I have asked several times for a copy of my contract this has now been a month. This is a legal document that're keeping from me that contains my signature. I would also like to know why you've decided to go back on your verbal agreement that you had upon termination of my employment. Can you give me a date where I will have my contract copy that I;ve signed and also why the delay in sending me this.

They're replied:

The contract is not being withheld from you. It is now attached to save time. The good will gesture wasn't an agreement is was simply a good will gesture, a gesture that was retracted once you decided to contact a member of my team with the intention of damaging the department. I am happy to discuss this with you. Having gone through your file it turns out you didn't in fact sign your contract. (And has sent me parts of the contract, but missing loads and has sent me copies where I wouldn't have signed if that makes sense)

I have since replied:

The copies you've sent me here are what supposed to be what should have been given to me. I signed every copy of the contract as you know because we sat down together and went through it before you took it back. I have asked you several times for a copy. I was told several times I would get a copy and I never did. Under the employment rights act I am entitled to the signed contracts I signed not the copies of blank contract documentation.

Under no circumstances have I said anything to anyone that could be deemed damaging to you or the department so I find these unfounded accusations very surprising and defamatory of my character.

Please note by not paying me the full months salary as the verbal agreement agreed by yourself I have no choice but to treat it as an unlawful deduction of wages.

They have since replied:

I can only assume that if the signed copies arent in your folder then you must have already been given them. Our contractual obligation to employees who are dismissed within one month of their starting date is to give nil notice, therefore you will be paid up to the date you left.

I'm being asked by payroll when the laptop will be returned I have told them you intend to return it on the 31st, they are paying all money owed and trusting this will happen.

Speaking to Acas they they think I may have a case for the verbal agreement. Can anyone help me here? They have the full signed contract from me and are making out I've not signed certain bits when they went through it with me. He did verbally agree to pay me a full months salary and is saying some utter bullshit to not pay.

What can I do? I haven't replied to that last email

And thank you for reading this far

MummyBex1985 Tue 28-Jul-15 18:41:49

Hi

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but without a written contract, your notice period is zero under one month, or one week if you were there over a month. Verbal agreements are likely to mean diddly squat. sad

They've behaved appallingly but sadly there isn't much you can do. Chase them for a weeks notice if relevant, and any accrued holiday pay.

Sorry this has happened to you.

MummyBex1985 Tue 28-Jul-15 18:42:59

Sorry I should add - if you did sign a contract then that will be binding.

They'd have to disclose it as part of court proceedings.

Confusedcoconut Tue 28-Jul-15 18:56:04

HI Bex,

Thanks for your reply. Are you sure the verbal agreement wouldn't stand? I have him on email saying he is retracting it and surely that's admitting it was there and agreed. Acas can't help on that as it's legal, but they said I may have a case on that alone. Can't afford legal advice right now so wanted to know where I stood. CAB is closed and no one seems to know if I have a leg to stand on or not.

bestguess23 Tue 28-Jul-15 19:04:00

Unfortunately you have almost no rights in this situation. I know it doesn't help you now but in future when you sign a contract keep a copy. The verbal contract would be very difficult to prove although it helps that they have referenced it in an email. CAB may be able to help but if they flat refuse to pay it will be hard to force them as you haven't acquired statutory employment rights until you are employed for two years. Don't withold their equipment or you will be in breach of your contract, you need to stay in the right if you are to get anywhere.

bestguess23 Tue 28-Jul-15 19:05:17

Did you do what they are alleging? The incident that resulted in the retraction of the good will gesture?

Confusedcoconut Tue 28-Jul-15 19:09:54

No I didn't. I've said nothing of the sort. It seems he's trying to lie and get out of paying what he agreed. It's like the contracts. They were all signed he went through it with me. Now he's making out he doesn't have them or I should have them. It's bullshit

bestguess23 Tue 28-Jul-15 19:15:28

It is and it is wrong that employees don't have support in these circumstances. I think your best would be to work out what you think you are owed including holiday pay, send a letter detailing it and then call their bluff. You could send a letter in advance of action and see if they respond to that. It is all bluff and bluster though because it would cost you more to take this to court than you would probably win and to be honest I think you would lose. I am not a lawyer but did win a tribunal against a former employer for constructive dismissal so have had to learn lots about employment law. My last question is do you have anything that would be a 'protected characteristic' such as a disability as that can swing things slightly in your favour in certain circumstances but only if you believe you were treated differently because of it.

Confusedcoconut Tue 28-Jul-15 20:15:50

No I don't have anything. The only thing I thought I had was him agreeing the full salary and him saying he's retracting it back. Seems totally unfair. I was 2 days off from being there a month. I know I wouldn't normally give two shits, but it's the principle of it. Someone told me to keep their stuff and wait and see if they'll take me to court for it and then I can say they owe me money, but I don't want things to get anymore messy or personal.

Lesson learnt never work for a small company in this industry ever again. And never leave without a copy of my contract people words mean nothing these days!I'm not going to respond to the last email. I shall wait until money clears in my account Friday. Thanks for your advice

bestguess23 Tue 28-Jul-15 20:22:27

The issue you have is that your grievances are employment grievances and therefore a civil matter. You keeping their equipment would be theft and a criminal matter. For 2 days extra pay I think you should just walk away with your head held high. They are behaving badly and you are in the right. It is a shame that's not reflected in your rights.

Confusedcoconut Tue 28-Jul-15 20:36:06

They're actually docking me 7 days pay as it's monthly. it's a loss of over 650 so it's a lot of money I'm going to lose out on. Ah well

bestguess23 Tue 28-Jul-15 20:40:47

Sorry, I misunderstood your pp. if that's the case you could try calling their bluff a bit more. You could say something like you have taken legal advice and will pursue them for failing to give you a copy of your signed contract and breaking a verbal agreement that they acknowledged in their email. Tell them you dispute the allegation and see if they give in. Do consider a notice in advance of action and see if that scares them into a compromise at least. Do return the property though.

guzzlewump Wed 29-Jul-15 00:50:52

Have you got legal cover as part of your insurance? If so, that often has a help line that you can get advice from in situations like this.

Confusedcoconut Wed 29-Jul-15 09:01:01

No I don't have any insurance

Confusedcoconut Wed 29-Jul-15 09:01:46

Best I'm trying to think of a reply where it's got legal words where they'll have to take notice. What if they call my bluff?

flowery Wed 29-Jul-15 11:34:21

I'm confused. They've given you an unsigned copy. Is it different wording from the signed version or something?

What did the signed contract guarantee you that the unsigned copy doesn't?

bestguess23 Wed 29-Jul-15 12:13:52

You're asking them for the additional week's pay in lieu of notice that they verbally agreed to. You are also asking them to fulfil their legal obligation to provide you with a fully signed copy of your contract or proof that it has already been sent to you. You are entitled to the contract, you are on shaky ground for the PILON as you were there less than a month. Do you need a reference from them? If not, it would be worth asking for a copy now or even better if you can use another employer.

bestguess23 Wed 29-Jul-15 12:16:32

If they call your bluff there's not much you can do. You'd struggle to get the money by any other route. You are entitled to your contract but it probably doesn't vary from the unsigned one you have. It is unlikely to hugely change the outcome unless it gives an unusually generous notice period whilst under probation.

Confusedcoconut Wed 29-Jul-15 16:54:00

Thanks all. I don't need a reference from them as I'll say I was temping. Lots to think about. I think I'll wait and see what goes into my account on Friday.

RedDaisyRed Wed 29-Jul-15 21:36:29

What was in the signed contract that helps you? Did it say a month's notice or something like that?

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