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cityguru, Solicitor
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 13326
Experience:  Senior lawyer with 30 years experience
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After a period of considerable work related stress, I wrote

Customer Question

After a period of considerable work related stress, I wrote a letter of resignation. This was accepted in writing by my employer. After a period of 4 days reflection I asked for retraction of my resignation to be considered. One week after this I was told that my resignation would not be retracted but I was asked to extend my notice period to allow more time for recruitment of my replacement. I was told that many aspects of my performance at work were excellent but that others were unsatisfactory. And that was the reason for not allowing me to retract. I am under dr care for stress related issues. Do I have any grounds to ask again for retraction? Thank you
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  cityguru replied 4 years ago.
Thank you for your question.

When you hand in your notice, it terminates your contract on the expiry date of your notice. You cannot legally retract it unless the employer agrees. Equally you are not obliged to work any longer than your contractual notice period.

If you felt obliged to resign because of your treatment at work it may be that you have a case for constructive dismissal although that will depend on your treatment and whether you raised a grievance about any of the issues.

I suggest you tell your employer that you resigned because of the stress you were placed under and if they are not prepared to allow you to retract your notice you are certainly not going to stay beyond your notice date - you might suggest that this is typical of the treatment that you have received and you are taking legal advice about whether you have a claim. That might motivate them to think about reinstating you.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Many thanks for the reply.

It actually suits me to work beyond my notice date - as I have not got any plans yet for another job.

What I did not mention to you is that also I have been suffering a bereavement (my sister died last year, at a young age, a painful death from cancer) and since that time my mother has become estranged from me and my family - and has suffered a break down. So my personal life has been a nightmare. Would there be any benefit in asking my Dr to give my employer info about this situation?


Also, when my employer confirmed that she would not retract my resignation, she gave me info about a number of aspects of my work that she was not happy with and asked for my assurance that these would be improved during the notice period (which is 14 months - I am a teacher). These aspects had not ever been brought up previously as part of my annual prof review. She said it was these factors that led to her decision to now allow retraction - despite confirming that in all other ways, my work was excellent.

Do I have any grounds to go back to her on the basis that these issues had not been raised previously?


Thank you very much.

Expert:  cityguru replied 4 years ago.
Are you saying you are on 12 months notice? That is exceptionally long for an employee. Yes if your employer is complaining about your performance you can raise a grievance.

You could also argue that by saying your work is substandard and hence they will not allow a retraction it amounts to constructive dismissal but I would start with the grievance and refuse to extend the notice period