How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Ben Jones Your Own Question

Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 44867
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
29905560
Type Your Employment Law Question Here...
Ben Jones is online now

if an employee on a lower rate of pay is asked or told to do

Customer Question

if an employee on a lower rate of pay is asked or told to do the same task /jib description/job profile as an employee on a higher rate are they entitled to the higher rate
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is Ben and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

Ben Jones :

Please note that as a practising solicitor I am often in and out of meetings, travelling, or even at court when I pick your question up. This may even occur at evenings and weekends. Therefore, I apologise in advance if there is a slight delay in getting back to you. Rest assured that I am dealing with your query and will respond ASAP. You do not have to wait here and you will receive an email as soon as I have responded. For now please let me know how long they have worked for the company

JACUSTOMER-r3zg8gy2- :

I have worked for the company 10 yrs plus and was on a yearly salary but on return to work after battling cancer for 14 months find they are issueing new contracts and this is the first time engineers have been able tp compare the differing rates being paid for ths same position of serv eng

Ben Jones :

There is no automatic right to be paid the higher rate if performing tasks that would usually be done by employees who get paid more. Whether the employee gets a higher rate will depend entirely on their contract. If they are contracted at a specific rate then they will be paid for that rate, regardless of what they do. At the same time, the employer cannot ask the employee to undertake other tasks which are not listed in their job description or for which there is no clause allowing them task to do it. So if the employee is forced to do this work when no such right exists in their contract, they can refuse to do it. If the right exists to ask them to do it, then they will be paid their usual rate as per their contract.

JACUSTOMER-r3zg8gy2- :

I have an answer from a site which states ; where the same duties are proformed , employees are entitled to the same rate of pay , different rates of pay can only apply if this is based on different lengths of service which are reflected under different salary scales, annual increments or other conditions of employment provide such a salary scales to a maximum that is achived within a specified period of time . is this correct as the site says this condition is mandatory

JACUSTOMER-r3zg8gy2- :

with regard to the contracts the other engineers that are paid less than myself have same contract as myself

Ben Jones :

The law on equal pay is frequently misunderstood. Many workers believe that there is a right to equal pay across the workforce, especially for workers that perform the same or similar jobs.

However, the reality is that employers are free to pay their employees whatever they wish, as long as it is above the National Minimum Wage and in accordance with the employee's contract of employment. It is not generally unlawful to pay employees doing the same or similar jobs different rates. The only time this would be an issue is if the reasons for the difference in pay is discriminatory, most commonly due to a difference in gender.

Therefore, if there is evidence that the reason for the difference in pay is gender-related, the law of equal pay will be relevant and a potential claim would exist. However, if the reason is not discriminatory then there is unlikely to be a valid claim. Whilst the employer’s actions may impact on the employees’ morale and may seem unfair, they would not be illegal.

Even if there was evidence that the reasons may be gender-related, the employer could still try and rely on the genuine material factor defence to defend any equal pay claim. This would occur where the employer can show the difference in pay is due to:

  • Market forces and skills shortages
  • Red circling
  • Geographical differences
  • Different skills, qualifications and experience

The law on equal pay is frequently misunderstood. Many workers believe that there is a right to equal pay across the workforce, especially for workers that perform the same or similar jobs.

However, the reality is that employers are free to pay their employees whatever they wish, as long as it is above the National Minimum Wage and in accordance with the employee's contract of employment. It is not generally unlawful to pay employees doing the same or similar jobs different rates. The only time this would be an issue is if the reasons for the difference in pay is discriminatory, most commonly due to a difference in gender.

Therefore, if there is evidence that the reason for the difference in pay is gender-related, the law of equal pay will be relevant and a potential claim would exist. However, if the reason is not discriminatory then there is unlikely to be a valid claim. Whilst the employer’s actions may impact on the employees’ morale and may seem unfair, they would not be illegal.

Even if there was evidence that the reasons may be gender-related, the employer could still try and rely on the genuine material factor defence to defend any equal pay claim. This would occur where the employer can show the difference in pay is due to:

  • Market forces and skills shortages
  • Red circling
  • Geographical differences
  • Different skills, qualifications and experience

Ben Jones :

Sorry for the double post

JACUSTOMER-r3zg8gy2- :

so in effect what you are saying it irrevellant what skills a person has or his experience one has an employer can pay what he thinks fit ,even if the higher paid is less skilled

Ben Jones : Yes that is correct. You are entitled to be paid the minimum wage as a start and then whatever your contract entitled you to
Ben Jones : Has this answered your query?
Ben Jones :

Please let me know if this has answered your query or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this?

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie
< Previous | Next >
  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie
  • A quick response, a succinct and helpful answer in simple English. I believe I can now confront the counter party with confidence -- worth the 30 bucks! Rick
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C.
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin
  • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Ben Jones

    Ben Jones

    UK Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    10055
    Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BE/benjones/2015-12-1_0437_ennew.64x64.jpg Ben Jones's Avatar

    Ben Jones

    UK Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    10055
    Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/KA/Kasare/kasare.64x64.jpg Kasare's Avatar

    Kasare

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    41
    Solicitor, 10 yrs plus experience in civil litigation, employment and family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/OS/osh/2015-7-7_19268_gettyimagesb.64x64.jpg Joshua's Avatar

    Joshua

    Laywer

    Satisfied Customers:

    49
    LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/taratill/2010-03-09_111600_phpsik04M_c2AM.jpg taratill's Avatar

    taratill

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    661
    15 years experience of advising on employment law matters
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/LI/li/2014-12-19_134845_lexughes.64x64.jpg Alice H's Avatar

    Alice H

    Solicitor Advocate

    Satisfied Customers:

    99
    Partner in national law firm with 20+ years legal experience
  • /img/opt/shirt.png tdlawyer's Avatar

    tdlawyer

    Laywer

    Satisfied Customers:

    53
    Lawyer with 9 years experience in employment related issues.
 
 
 

Related Employment Law Questions