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Your rights when on a short-term contract?

(3 Posts)
dooscooby Tue 09-Aug-11 13:05:31

Hi there, I'm currently employed on a fixed term contract from Feb 10-Feb 12. I'm 20 weeks pg so due to go on mat leave on 8th Dec 11. I'm not sure how long I'd want to take off yet but this is influenced by the fact that my contract will expire 2 months after my mat leave starts.

I work for a tiny organisation and my employment contract has no mention of maternity at all. I therefore understand that I will be eligible for stat mat pay beyond the end of my contract but that they don't have to take me back afterwards as they can just say they decided not to renew my role.

The organisation is making the right noises that they want to keep me on a part-time basis and if so, I'd be willing to come back earlier (as I like my job and it's very convenient for my home/life), however I guess I'd need to see and sign a new contract quite soon, otherwise I would be best taking as much stat mat leave as I'm allowed.

Has anyone else got experience of this? Can I say I'm willing to come back after 5 months part-time but only if they show me a new contract before December, otherwise I want to take a year? I should probably call Citizens Advice but I've been a bit cautious as we have connections with the organisation through work!

Thanks for reading my babble!

kdiddy Tue 09-Aug-11 17:58:46

Not been through this myself but from my understanding of contracts, you would need to agree some contract renewal / extension otherwise, as you say, they could just end the contract at the normal expiry date in Feb 2012.

TBH it's up to them really, if they're prepared to offer you something which you can sign pre-mat leave then you'll know what you're coming back to (although if it's another fixed-term contract they could technically finish it early anyway if they so wished). It's a risk for them though - as it not only incurs them additional cost for your mat pay, but there's also the possibility you might decide not to come back to work - or you might decide to take your full mat leave entitlement. So I think you'll have to make yourself indispensable and unquestionably trustworthy (as I'm sure you are!!).

dooscooby Wed 10-Aug-11 11:13:42

Thanks for your reply kdiddy. I suppose I'm thinking more about my own scenario than the organisation and like you say, there are risks involved for them. I know I'm biased but because of what I do I do think it would take a new person a while to get the ropes, by which time I could be back part-time, although perhaps I'm being a bit self-important and someone else would be able to pick up the reigns quicker than I think!

Must concentrate on making myself indispensable now and get off mumsnet!

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