Archives

Archives / 2013 / November
  • Constructive Dismissal Reasons: Test Reaffirmed

    Tags: Constructive Unfair Dismissal, Employment Law, Employment Tribunal, Healthcare, Care Home

    Bringing or defending a claim for constructive unfair dismissal can be a tricky business at the best of times. Much of this difficulty for both an employee in claiming and an employer defending can be in diving what the substantive reasons are for the resignation in response to a purported fundamental breach of contract on the part of the employer.

    In the recent case Employment Appeals Tribunal (“EAT”) of Wright v North Ayrshire Council the question was raised as to whether in order to be successful in bringing a claim for constructive unfair dismiss, must the alleged contractual breach by an employer be the principal reason for an employee’s resignation?

    The EAT was able to confirm that no this need not be the case, it is adequate that the fundamental or ‘ … more

  • Ambiguous Resignations

    Tags: Constructive Unfair Dismissal, Employment Law, Employment Tribunal, Time Limit, Effective Date of Termination

    Dealing with resignation by employees is a natural and unavoidable part of being an employer. Issues can however arise in respect of the form that such resignations can take, specifically the ambiguous language that some employees tend to use when quitting employment.

    A question recently put before the Employment Appeals Tribunal (“EAT”) in the case of Secretary of State for Justice v Hibbert was that when an employee states in their resignation “I have no alternative but to resign my position”, were these words ambiguous in their construction and meaning?

    The EAT found that such words were unambiguous. The point in issue for this case was whether a claim for unfair dismissal had been lodged out of time. This turned on the effect of the letter of resignation … more

  • Contract? What Contract?!

    Tags: Employment Status, Employment Law, Employment Tribunal, Contract

    Clarification or even admittance of an employer/employee relationship can sometimes be a rather contentious exercise where disputes arise as to the nature of a working arrangement.

    Recently in the case of Troutbeck SA v White & Anor the Court of Appeal (“CA”) was required to look at a situation where an employer had little day-to-day control over its employee’s work. The CA was however able to find that such a lack of control was not a fatal obstacle to there being an employment relationship being in existence.

    Troutbeck had previously employed a couple to operate and watch over a small farm estate in Surrey which the company had bought as an investment as well as serving as holiday getaway for its Nigerian owners.

    The parties entered into an express written … more

  • Zero Hour Uncertainty

    Tags: Unfair Dismissal, Employment Law, Employment Tribunal, Zero Hour Contracts, Variation of Contract

    In past issues we have considered the legal-commercial rationale for implementing ‘zero hours’ contracts for part or all of a workforce – those contracts where there is no obligation either for the employer to provide work, nor for the worker to accept the same.

    A point not previously touched upon and recently brought to the fore via case law, is the concept of an employment relationship considered by the employer to be zero hours, although not expressly labelled as such and that over time ‘crystallises’ into something much more substantial in terms of the rights capable of being asserted by the worker.

    The case of Borrer v Cardinal Security Ltd demonstrates that employers utilising zero hour contracts may over time find that the contractual arrangement … more

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  • Understanding Your Legal Rights When an Employee Leaves

    Tags: Notice, Garden Leave, Payment, Company Property, Training Costs, Restrictive Covenants, Exit, Resignation, Employer, Employee, Employment Law, UKEmpLaw

    When an employee leaves, the focus is often on their entitlements. But what are your rights as an employer and what practical steps can you take to ensure a smooth exit? 

    Giving Notice 

    When it comes to employees giving notice, there are several key areas to note. Employers do not have to ‘accept’ a resignation – it is a unilateral act. Equally, they do not have to accept a retraction of notice, unless it was given in the heat of the moment, or the employee was unwell.

    Employees must give at least a weeks’ notice once they have been employed for more than a month. However, longer notice is usually set out in the employment contract.

    If the employee starts work for someone else in their notice period, it is possible to obtain an injunction to prevent … more

    

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