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Employment Law for Employees News

 

Can I amend my Employment Tribunal claim form once it's submitted?

Employment Team
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In order to bring a claim against your employer at an Employment Tribunal (ET), you must complete an ET1 claim form. It is vital that you complete this form correctly, as once your ET1 form has been sent, you cannot change anything on it unless you get permission from the ET. You may wish to amend your claim form due to an error in your initial submission, or because more information has come to light that wasn’t apparent before. Whether the ET will agree to amend the claim form depends on what the changes are and their significance to your case. In this article, our Employment team detail the facts that the ET will consider when deciding whether to allow amendments to a claim form and they examine the case that provides a guiding influence on the process.

Can I refuse suitable alternative employment when being made redundant?

Employment Team
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If your employer has notified you that your role is at risk of being made redundant, they are obliged to consider whether there is the possibility of offering you alternative employment so as to avoid redundancy. You can refuse the role if one is found, but you should be cautious as doing so on unreasonable grounds will mean that you are not entitled to your statutory redundancy payment. In this article, our Employment team details what your employer must do to offer you an alternative role and for what reasons you can turn down the role and still receive your redundancy pay.

What is ACAS Early Conciliation?

Employment Team
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If you are considering bringing an Employment Tribunal claim against your former, current or a potential employer, you will have to go through ACAS Early Conciliation before you do so. This is the process that employees and individuals are required to enter into before they are able to bring claim to an Employment Tribunal (ET). It is designed to try and resolve disputes, if possible, before they reach the ET; in this article, our Employment team details how to start the conciliation process and how long it could take.

What can I do if my employer rejects my flexible working request?

Employment Team
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While flexible working is a much more common occurrence than before, requests are not always granted. If your request is rejected, your employer could allow you to appeal their decision. In this article, our Employment team detail what criteria has to be met in order to first make a flexible working request, how you can appeal if your request is rejected and what you can do if your appeal isn’t successful.

Can my partner attend my antenatal appointments?

Employment Team
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It is well known that pregnant employees are entitled to time off to attend antenatal appointments, and rights for partners are now being extended. The introduction of Shared Parental Leave is one example, and rights to accompany a pregnant woman to an appointment have also been revised. In this article, the Employment team discuss who is eligible to attend antenatal appointments and what your employers might request from you.

Can a settlement agreement include a restrictive covenant?

Employment Team
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If you are offered a settlement agreement by your employer, depending on your role and the circumstances of you leaving the business, it is likely it will include restrictive covenants. There are several types of restrictive covenant that could be included; in this article, our Employment team explains each of them, what makes them enforceable and if you can negotiate the restrictive covenants with your employer before signing your settlement agreement.

Can a restrictive covenant be removed from an employment contract?

Employment Team
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If a restrictive covenant is already in your employment contract, you can seek your employer’s consent to have it removed.  Depending on the reason, they could refuse this request or it may be removed by an Employment Tribunal if they determine it is unreasonable. 

Can I ask my employer for a settlement agreement?

Employment Team
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Whilst employers are usually the ones to take the first step in offering a settlement agreement, it is possible to request a settlement agreement from your employer. In this article our Employment team detail what a settlement agreement is and what you need to consider when requesting one.

What can I disclose after signing a non-disclosure agreement (NDA)?

Howard Robson
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Non-disclosure agreements have been featured heavily in the news recently due to their controversial nature, and the legality of them is currently being questioned. Whilst NDAs are predominantly used by employers to protect confidential business information, there are certain things in which you cannot be prevented from disclosing, such as information that is already publicly available. Here, our Employment team discuss what else you may be able to disclose, some potential incoming changes to NDAs and why the use of them can be controversial.

What should be included in my social media policy?

Employment Team
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Depending on your business, how you use social media and why you use social media, a social media policy should specify the appropriate language to be used on both personal and company profiles, who should be posting on behalf of the company, when employees can and cannot be accessing social media, as well as the sanctions if the social media policy is not adhered to.  Here, our Employment team explain more about the detail that should be included within a social media policy.

What rights do carers have at work?

Employment Team
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Carers who are also in full time or part time employment have certain rights and protections, such as the right to time off for dependants and protection from associative discrimination. There are currently 6.5 million carers across the UK who are looking after the country’s most vulnerable people while also working. 

Can I keep my Linkedin contacts when I move to a new job?

Employment Team
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This is a complicated area and one that will be dependent on various factors, including the details of your employment contract, when the contact was made and whether they were made due to your own individual efforts.  When you leave your employment, LinkedIn could be a potential threat to your former employer as you can notify all of your contacts at the same time of your new position just by updating your profile, which could be a risk if your new employer is a competitor to your previous one.

What are the common negotiated terms in settlement agreements?

Employment Team
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Settlement agreements are increasingly being used by employers in dismissal or redundancy situations; after signing a settlement agreement an employee has waived their rights to bring a claim against their employer.  While they are usually standard documents, it is important that the clauses are reviewed to ensure that they best suit their individual needs.   Our Employment team reviews here the most common terms used in settlement agreements, and what you should do if you are asked to sign one by your employer.

Will the termination payment in my settlement agreement be taxed?

Employment Team
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Settlement agreements are commonly used to settle or waive any employment related claims an employee or worker may have against an employer. Our Employment team specialise in advising employees and workers on their rights regarding settlement agreements, and are regularly asked whether the payment they receive will be taxed.  Here, the team answer this question, as well as advise on the next steps should you be presented with a settlement agreement.

Do I have a whistleblowing claim?

Employment Team
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If you feel you are being treated detrimentally, or you have been dismissed, due to reporting on your employer, you could have a claim for whistleblowing.  Our Employment team reviews the two different claims you could have in this situation, and how you should proceed if you have questions.

Are my restrictive covenants enforceable if I have been dismissed or made redundant?

Employment Team
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With the continued rise in employers using restrictive covenants within employment contracts, it is important that employees are aware of their rights and responsibilities, from signing the contract of employment to their enforceability once they move to different employment. 

Do I need legal advice before signing a settlement agreement?

Employment Team
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If you have been dismissed or made redundant, you may be presented with a settlement agreement from your employer.  These agreements are increasingly being used by employers in these situations as by doing so you are waiving your right to bring a claim...

Can my employer withdraw from a flexible working agreement?

Employment Team
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There are two ways that you can ask for flexible working: A statutory request (a request made in writing which can only be made once in any 12-month period). A non-statutory request (a request made if you’re not eligible to make a statutory request,...

GDPR - Much Ado About Nothing?

Natalie Rawson
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GDPR has been effective for almost six months now and the Information Commissioner’s Office (“ICO”) has prosecuted or taken other enforcement action (and imposed monetary penalties, enforcement notices, or demanded undertakings)...

Employment Team welcomes new Trainee Solicitor

Pam Kamel
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Our Employment team are delighted to welcome a new Trainee Solicitor to their team; Pam Kamel.  Pam has worked at Warner Goodman since 2015, beginning in the Residential Conveyancing team in Portsmouth before moving to the Commercial Property team as a...

More qualification success as Trainee Solicitor qualifies into Employment team

Gina McCadden
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Celebrations continue in the Southampton office of Warner Goodman as Gina McCadden has qualified into the Employment team. Gina joined the firm in September 2014 working as a Paralegal in the team.  Prior to this, she studied law at the University of...

Feeling forced to resign; what is constructive dismissal?

Howard Robson
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Howard Robson, Partner in the Employment department, explains the situations where a constructive dismissal claim may be an option, the steps you can take before you resign and how to proceed in your claim if things do not improve.

Employment Law Case Update: Pimlico Plumber v Smith

Employment Team
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Mr Smith worked for Pimlico Plumbers for five and a half years, until he suffered a heart attack; the contract was terminated four months later. Following this, Mr Smith brought claims to the Employment Tribunal (ET) for unfair dismissal, wrongful dismissal,...

Celebrations as Trainee Solicitor qualifies into Employment Law Team!

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Tuesday 1st May is an important day for Chris Greep, who has been a Warner Goodman Trainee Solicitor for the last 18 months, as this is the day he becomes a Solicitor.

What are my pension rights

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According to Francis Goss, chief commercial officer at consultancy AHC, employees, especially younger workers, do not understand their pension rights and could be risking their financial stability in the future.  

Can my employer change my employment contract without my consent?

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An employment contract is a legal agreement between an employee and their employer. There are rules in place relating to changes of any of the terms of the contract. Here we explain how an employer can change an employee’s contract without their consent.

Will the New Year mean a new career?

Howard Robson
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A New Year makes us all think about resolutions; some of us join a gym to get fit, some of us may wish to volunteer more, and apparently one in three of us would like to start a new career or change jobs. 

Warner Goodman weighs in on employers' ability to monitor private messages

Howard Robson
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Employees across the country are today warned to reconsider using their employer’s communications systems and their working time to send personal messages after the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ruled that companies could monitor workers’ communications online.

Careful Consideration

Howard Robson
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The use of restrictive covenants has grown significantly in recent years as our economy and job market improves, encouraging new business start-ups and heightened competition.  The onus of proper use of restrictive covenants has tended to fall towards the employer, but employees must also be sure to act within the restrictions in their contract, otherwise they could face legal action such as an injunction or a claim for damages

EU vetoes maternity leave in surrogate cases

Howard Robson
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The European Court of Justice has ruled against claims for maternity benefits by mothers whose babies were born through surrogacy in two cases just announced, with the decisions coming weeks after the UK has agreed legislation that will put both intending surrogate and adoptive parents on the same footing as natural parents from next year.  Howard Robson, Employment Partner, reviews the two cases and the impact this has on employers and employees.

Employment Team grows with newly qualified solicitor

Emma Kemp
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The Employment Team at Hampshire based law firm, Warner Goodman LLP, has recently expanded as Emma Wyatt becomes a fully qualified solicitor after completing her 2 year training contract with the firm.

Shares for Rights... Another example of the Osborne ingenuity?

Howard Robson
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Recent proposals from the Chancellor, George Osborne, for a new type of employee-employer relationship have Howard Robson, Employment Partner, wondering what impact, if any, these could have on employees and employers around the country.

Do zero hours contracts mean zero benefits?

Howard Robson
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In the last few weeks zero hours contracts have been in the focus of the media following the publication of various statistics which demonstrated that they are far more widely used than previously thought.  In particular, statistics were released showing that workers on zero hours contracts earn, on average, £6 an hour less and that there are more than a million workers on zero hours contracts.

Down with Spanish Flu?...don't lose your holiday because of it

Howard Robson
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We all know that feeling, first day of the holiday and down with a hideous virus. Well, until recently an employee has had to pull up the duvet and hope for better luck next time a holiday comes around, unless their boss is sympathetic says Howard Robson, employment law partner at Hampshire based law firm Warner Goodman Commercial.

Tribunal Fee Structure...Reducing Costs or Claims?

Howard Robson
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As with a lot of things in today’s world, an employment tribunal claim can be commenced at the click of a button, and at no cost.  However, following Government responses to the Charging Fees in Tribunals and the Employment Appeal Tribunal consultations in July 2012, it is likely that from Summer 2013 there will be the introduction of a fee structure to the tribunal process.