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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 48172
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Hi. Two years ago a have got depression as a result of bullying

Customer Question

Hi. Two years ago a have got depression as a result of bullying & harassment from my manager and excessive workload, no breaks... This summer looks like depression gone and I come back to normal working hours. After two month I have got ill again. I haven't got any compensation from my work, not paying to me sick pay (only SSP), they saying all my sick pay been used 2 years ago. I ask HR did company has insurance for work related illness. Have not received an answer, instead of that they arranging meeting for me with HR consultant. My question is do I have to take solicitor or someone else with me to meeting?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How long have you worked there?

Customer:

Hi. 21 of March will be 3 years.

Ben Jones :


OK, thank you, XXXXX XXXXX this with me - I will look into this for you, get my response ready and get back to you on here. No need to wait around and you will get an email when I have responded, thank you

Ben Jones :

Many thanks for your patience. Whether you can take someone with you to the meeting will depend on the nature of that meeting and what the potential outcome could be.


 


The legal right for workers to be accompanied at certain meetings in the workplace is dealt with under sections 10-15 of the Employment Relations Act 1999. It states that where a worker is required to attend a disciplinary or grievance hearing and the worker 'reasonably requests' to be accompanied at that hearing, the employer must allow them to be accompanied by a 'single companion’.


 


The meetings that are covered by this right are:


• Formal disciplinary hearing (any hearing where a warning is to be issued, other disciplinary action is to be taken, or a sanction is confirmed, such as an appeal hearing) - it will include hearings that may lead to dismissal if they are related to misconduct or capability issues


• Formal grievance hearing


 


There is no legal right to be accompanied at an investigatory meeting, or in redundancy situations - a consultation meeting or a meeting to confirm someone's termination by reason of redundancy.


 


Finally, when it comes to the choice of companion, the worker is entitled to be accompanied either by a trade union representative or a workplace colleague. There is no right to be accompanied by family, friends or any legal representatives, such as lawyers.


 


If this is not a meeting where your employment could be terminated then it is likely to be a welfare or other meeting that would not allow you to have legal representation, or any other representation for that matter. If the employer is considering terminating your employment at it then you will be able to bring in a colleague or trade union rep with you.

Ben Jones :

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

Customer:

Thank you very much for your reply. Grievance has been raised 2 years ago. Company didn't do anything to investigate it. Condition in my working place still very poor. One person per shift in my department - 138 bedrooms hotel. I'm just wondering why it's so hard for them to answer simple question " does company has an insurance for work related illness" instead of "yes" or "no" they arranging meeting with HR consultant. What can I expect from that meeting? Just simply your opinion. Thank you.

Ben Jones :

Good morning, if you had raised a grievance then they would have had a legal obligation to formally deal with it – investigate it, hold a grievance meeting with you, make a decision, allow you to appeal it. This is all covered in the ACAS Code of Conduct, which they need to follow.


 


It is strange that they have asked you to attend such a meeting and it is anyone’s guess what their intentions are. You could of course ask them to give you details in advance – after all you are attending a meeting and you have the right to know what it is about, whether you need to prepare anything and so on. I presume it may just be a meeting to have a general discussion about the issue and see what you want to achieve, although only once you are at the meeting will you know for certain. But as mentioned – ask them for details of the meeting and the reasons for holding it, you should be told at least the basic details in advance.

Ben Jones and 2 other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Ben.
Thank you very much. I'll definitely ask those questions. It was a big pleasure to talk to you. Jolanta

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
You are welcome all the best for now