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: 47392
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
29905560
Type Your Employment Law Question Here...
Ben Jones is online now

i am disabled and have to have time off for hospital procedures

Customer Question

i am disabled and have to have time off for hospital procedures , i broke my foot in work and 3 years later when i sneezed a disc in my back moved, medics say this was a result of over compensating on my right side because of the broken foot on my left side, i have been summoned to a disiplinary meeting with the staff dismissal sub commitie of the govening body (i work in a school) the letter i received from my employer says i am to be dismissed due to the time i have had off work because of my disability. i am registered disabled and have now got spinal spondaloses and syatica in my back and right leg all brought on as a result of my accident. i also have type 2 diabeatus, high cholestrial and fat in my liver these have been brought on through an increase in my weight as i now have limmited mobility (i used to be sporty and very active and of normal weight before my back went) the time i have had off work have been supported by a sick/fit note. not all my absence from work has been because of my acident i have been of because i had meningitus and a few days off because my mum had only a few days to live a victim of cancer however i did have sick/fit notes to cover this. can they dismiss me on these grounds?
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 for? Please note that as I am just going offline I won't be able to provide a full response now but will do so first thing in the morning. Thanks
JACUSTOMER-w2qwa5ji- :

this is my 15th paid year 1999 i did 1 year before that volountery

JACUSTOMER-w2qwa5ji- :

i received a letter dated 25/02/14 stating that i have to attend a sickness procedure invertaion to attend a stage three hearing on the 6/03/14 to concider my continuing poor sickness absence record. the meeting will give concideration to my termination of employment with the school as a result of my pesistant and exsessive absence of sickness. all of my absences have been covered by sick/fit notes. i don't understand how it can be exsessive when i was covered by both the hospital, my GP and other medical professionals.the school is overstaffed and we are ofted visit in the near future as our 3 years are up.

Ben Jones :

Good morning, dismissing an employee due to sickness absence is a potentially fair reason for dismissal under the Employment Rights Act 1996 as it would amount to a capability or even a misconduct issue.


 


However, to justify it as being fair the employer needs to follow a fair procedure and act reasonably. First and foremost the employer needs to comply with any workplace sickness absence procedures and policies. For example these could list the number or duration of absences before formal action is taken.


 


In any event, when considering the fairness of the employer's actions, a tribunal would usually look at the following factors:



  • Did the employer investigate the nature, extent and likely duration of any illness and consult the employee in the process

  • If absences are short-term and intermittent, investigating whether there is any underlying cause (medical or otherwise). If necessary, follow a capability or disciplinary procedure instead, offering practical guidance and assistance, setting timescales for improvement, and giving warnings where appropriate. Only continuous absences should threaten dismissal.

  • Before deciding to dismiss, consider surrounding circumstances, age and length of service of employee together with action taken in respect of similar situations in the past.

  • Consider importance of employee and/or the post occupied to the business, the impact their continued absence is having on the business and the difficulty and cost of continuing to deal with their absence.

  • Consider whether the employee could take up alternative employment or whether there are any other options that would avoid the need for dismissal.

  • If the employee has been absent long-term and is unlikely to return in the foreseeable future the employer should consider claiming under the terms of any Private Health Insurance policy or ill health retirement that is available.


 


Dismissal must always be viewed as a last resort by the employer. Only when it is obvious that the employee cannot continue in their job and that there was nothing else available for them to do would dismissal become a fair option. The courts have held that an important consideration is whether any reasonable employer would have waited longer in the circumstances before dismissing the employee.


 


It is also important to consider the additional rights someone would have if the condition that is affecting them amounts to a 'disability'. This can have a broad meaning and there is no single list of conditions that amount to a disability under law. Instead, to establish whether a person is disabled, they need to show they satisfy the legal definition of ‘disability’.


 


The Equality Act 2010 defines a disability as a “physical or mental impairment that has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on a person’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities”.


 


I will break this definition down:



  • Physical or mental impairment – this can include nearly any medical condition;

  • Substantial effect – the effect must be more than minor or trivial;

  • Long-term - the effect of the impairment must either have lasted or be likely to last for at least 12 months;

  • Normal day-to-day activities – these could include anything considered ‘normal’ in a person's normal daily routine (e.g. walking, driving, speaking, eating, washing, etc.)


 


If a person satisfies the above criteria, they will be classified as being disabled and will have automatic protection against discrimination, which means that they must not be treated unfavourably because of their disability. In addition, their employer would have a duty to make reasonable adjustments if they are likely to be placed at a substantial disadvantage when compared to non-disabled employees.


 


So in summary, if the employer has not taken time to investigate the true medical position, whether suitable employment was available and generally considered the effects the employee's continued absence would have on the business, any dismissal could potentially be unfair. In addition, if they have failed to make reasonable adjustments in the event the employee's condition amounted to a disability, this could also amount to disability discrimination.


 


The first step is to formally appeal the dismissal with the employer using the internal appeals procedure. After that all that can be done is to submit a claim for unfair dismissal in the employment tribunal (subject to having at least 2 years' continuous service), and/or pursue a claim for disability discrimination.

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

This is the said letter;



 


‘As you can see the head with Lynn Pearson has stated in line, 4 that I have had persistent and excessive absence for sickness.’ As I have said in reply to this letter. My reply letter below.


 



However, to justify it as being fair the employer needs to follow a fair procedure and act reasonably. First and foremost the employer needs to comply with any workplace sickness absence procedures and policies. For example these could list the number or duration of absences before formal action is taken. My unison representative has failed me and indeed I have felt in the meetings that she was there to represent the head instead of me, agreeing with everything the head said and suggested to the head on stage one and two that she might want to go straight to a stage three/dismissal. I would like to know if you or someone from your department would meet and represent me at the meeting if she decides the meeting is still going to happen without waiting for the outcome of the occupational health’s .doctors report.


 


 


In any event, when considering the fairness of the employer's actions, a tribunal would usually look at the following factors:


 


 



  • Did the employer investigate the nature, extent and likely duration of any illness and consult the employee in the process. My employer was shown all letters/appointment cards before the appointments, before the given date except the last appointment for a procedure to my spine in October 2013.this was because I received it in the term break and the procedure was at the last day of the break.


  • If absences are short-term and intermittent, investigating whether there is any underlying cause (medical or otherwise). If necessary, follow a capability or disciplinary procedure instead, offering practical guidance and assistance, setting timescales for improvement, and giving warnings where appropriate. Only continuous absences should threaten dismissal. What does this mean?




  • Before deciding to dismiss, consider surrounding circumstances, age and length of service of employee together with action taken in respect of similar situations in the past. None the head is new to this as I am, the HR has railroaded in and took charge well that’s what the head said.


 



  • Consider importance of employee and/or the post occupied to the business, the impact their continued absence is having on the business and the difficulty and cost of continuing to deal with their absence. Each classroom teacher has the minimum of one TA, there are many TA’s throughout the school including some who float between classes. When I have been off and returned I have been told that there had been no problem covering the ICT suite as the floating TA’s have been covering for me. These TA’s often come in when I’m there to hear children read.

  • Consider whether the employee could take up alternative employment or whether there are any other options that would avoid the need for dismissal. none


 



  • If the employee has been absent long-term and is unlikely to return in the foreseeable future the employer should consider claiming under the terms of any Private Health Insurance policy or ill health retirement that is available. What does this mean – had no real help. Who should have the private health insurance the employer or employee?


 


 


 


Dismissal must always be viewed as a last resort by the employer. Only when it is obvious that the employee cannot continue in their job and that there was nothing else available for them to do would dismissal become a fair option. The courts have held that an important consideration is whether any reasonable employer would have waited longer in the circumstances before dismissing the employee. The letter from the school does not take into consideration to the waiting of the outcome of the occupational health doctor or any negotiation.


 


 


It is also important to consider the additional rights someone would have if the condition that is affecting them amounts to a 'disability'. This can have a broad meaning and there is no single list of conditions that amount to a disability under law. Instead, to establish whether a person is disabled, they need to show they satisfy the legal definition of ‘disability’. I am registered disabled.


 


 


The Equality Act 2010 defines a disability as a “physical or mental impairment that has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on a person’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities”. As I have said before my quality of life and health has diminished since my back went. As a result of my disability I put on a lot of weight which caused me to have diabetes, high cholestial , fats in my liver causing gastric trouble and having to take a cattail of medication and given me IBS.


 


 


I will break this definition down:


 


 



  • Physical or mental impairment – this can include nearly any medical condition;


 



  • Substantial effect – the effect must be more than minor or trivial;


 



  • Long-term - the effect of the impairment must either have lasted or be likely to last for at least 12 months;


 



  • Normal day-to-day activities – these could include anything considered ‘normal’ in a person's normal daily routine (e.g. walking, driving, speaking, eating, washing, etc.) yes all of these my speaking is the least I just sometimes have to pause and search for the words I want this is since I had meningitis. I have limited walking and can only drive short distances since my back went.


If a person satisfies the above criteria, they will be classified as being disabled and will have automatic protection against discrimination, which means that they must not be treated unfavorably because of their disability. In addition, their employer would have a duty to make reasonable adjustments if they are likely to be placed at a substantial disadvantage when compared to non-disabled employees. Although I was working in the ICT suite I was not given the recommended furniture by the disabled specialist adviser who specially calibrated the furniture needed for me to able me to achieve my work with minimum stress to my back. It took a year before I got any kind of chair this was a computer chair that was not solely for me other staff used it and also let children use/play on the chair when I was not in the room. It got broke and the caretaker patched it up with black insulation tape. The chair to begin with was not appropriate for me but the head said I couldn’t have the chair the adviser suggested because it was too much money. Therefore I do not feel that I have had resonal adjustment.


 


 


So in summary, if the employer has not taken time to investigate the true medical position, whether suitable employment was available and generally considered the effects the employee's continued absence would have on the business, any dismissal could potentially be unfair. In addition, if they have failed to make reasonable adjustments in the event the employee's condition amounted to a disability, this could also amount to disability discrimination. Every class has at least 1 TA there are floating TA’s and I receive ssp I believe this is not paid by the school.


 


 


The first step is to formally appeal the dismissal with the employer using the internal appeals procedure. After that all that can be done is to submit a claim for unfair dismissal in the employment tribunal (subject to having at least 2 years' continuous service), and/or pursue a claim for disability discrimination. I do believe that I am being discriminated but would prefer to conclude this amicably because it has all taken a toll on my health. I find it hard to sleep and I am having chest pains and palpitations. I have had several ECGs and an echo scan which concluded my heart was ok and the pains are due to stress. The stress also makes me forget things that I have only just heard. Like I’m at home but the lights aren’t on.


 


 

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
Hi, what would you like to know about the above please?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


I have sent you a responce in reply to expert text box and an e-mail with 2 attatchments as they wouldn't go through in this box please reply thankyou

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
Q: My unison representative has failed me and indeed I have felt in the meetings that she was there to represent the head instead of me, agreeing with everything the head said and suggested to the head on stage one and two that she might want to go straight to a stage three/dismissal. I would like to know if you or someone from your department would meet and represent me at the meeting if she decides the meeting is still going to happen without waiting for the outcome of the occupational health’s .doctors report.

A: Unfortunately we cannot represent you in any capacity, all we can do is provide online help as in this case.


Q: Only continuous absences should threaten dismissal. What does this mean?

A: We are talking about long continued absences, for example months on without return, or frequent short-term absences

Q: If the employee has been absent long-term and is unlikely to return in the foreseeable future the employer should consider claiming under the terms of any Private Health Insurance policy or ill health retirement that is available. What does this mean – had no real help. Who should have the private health insurance the employer or employee?

A: It would be a scheme the employer holds but not all do, so check with them
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


is there anyone who you can recomend to represent me? After reading my explinations of my thoughts is my boss is being resonable or could I take her for unreasonable dismissle? Or where do I stand within the law?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.


for Ben Jones is there anyone who could represent me if they go ahead with the meeting as I have said my unison rep is rubbish she supports my boss instead of me. From what I have told you in the sections above would I be right in thinking I would be right in thinking unfair/disabled discimination dismissal?

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
by law you are not actually allowed to take anyone to such meetings apart from a union rep or a colleague so lawyers would not be allowed anyway. If you need a lawyer in the future then you can search fr one here:

http://www.lawsociety.org.uk/find-a-solicitor/#formtop

There are certainly grounds to consider a claim, although it is not possible to state what your chances of success are as a formal case analysis is needed for that, which we cannot do here
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


I've received a letter this morning stating she is not going to wait and the appointment is still going ahead. I got in-touch with the head office of Unison today. They gave my name to a Unison adviser who said I can't stop the meeting going on tomorrow and I will be offered an amount of money to go quietly and if I don't they are going to dismiss me anyway can they do this is this not constructive dismissal. Should I not be given time to concider?

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
yes you should but it is possible to agree a departure by mutual consent where they pay you off to go and you agree not to claim against them. However there are no rules on time to think about such an agreement, they could say take it or leave it now, even though to be valid you must still seek formal legal advice from a solicitor so it will buy you some more time. If they proceed with the dismissal anyway then you are looking at potentially challenging that as an unfair dismissal depending on the reasons and procedure used
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

This is what I plan to ask for the meeting to be adjourned as I do not have legal or union rep and to ask to be added to the minutes for future reference. I have no rep because I phoned Unison head office asking them to find me a rep NOT from the Salford office because as I had mentioned before I feel let down by them. A member of the office rang me someone who I have never met and have no chance to have any meeting with him before the stage 3 meeting and he has told me he will be there but will not be able to speak or do anything as he has already spoke to the head about me without my permission and told her the meeting can go ahead as he will be there representing me. He said she will give me £3,000 to go quietly and have no further rights to take ant further action OR I will be dismissed there and then. as I said I am going to asked for the meeting to be adjourned until I have representation. My question to you is if she wants to carry on with the meeting after me saying this do I stay and sit saying nothing or do I just leave the building? Which way would be best for me in respect of what happens next with the tribunal.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
Either way is acceptable because the employer will still be making a decision where you have made a request to postpone due to not having representation and they proceed anyway. So as not to be accused further of insubordination for example you may wish to stay in the meeting
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


I have sent this letter to unison head office by next day delivery.


 


Dear Sir/Madam


 



Regarding representation at the Dismissal Sub Committee of the Governing Body at St.Paul’s C of E Primary School, Cross Lane, Salford. M5 4AL




On the 25/02/14 I received a letter summoning me to the above committee to take place on the 6/03/14 because of absence through ill health.


As a paid up member of UNISON I asked my regional office for representation as I felt that I was not being satisfactorily represented in stage one and two. I felt that Diane the representative from Salford Unison was not supporting me but in fact appeared to be supporting in every respect.


 


I telephoned London Head office in London and explained the situation. The precipitant of the call said she would put me through to the right department. I was transferred back to regional office. I explained my reason for asking for a representative from another area. Mr Steve North (from Salford) rang me and said that he would find me a different represented.


 


As I had heard nothing from Mr North, on the 5/03/14 I again rang unison head office in London, I reminded them of my previous call. I once again transferred to Regional office and spoke to Anne and was again assured of different representation.


 


Despite this assurance on the afternoon of the 5/03/14 Mr North again rang me… Mr North at any time represented me in this case. He took it upon himself to contact my head teacher. H took it upon himself to say that, although he wood not be able to say anything , he would represent me at the meeting the next day.


‘I felt completely bamboozled’


I have never met Mr North! I have never discussed the details of my case with him! -- and I have never asked him to represent me!


 


Early on 6/03/14. I again contacted the head office in London and spoke to Diane explaining that a representative from Salford was not acceptable –yet again I was transferred to the regional office. I spoke to Georgia and for the first time I that I could only have a representative from within Salford.


 


You will remember that the meeting of the dismissal panel was scheduled for ‘today’ 6/03/14. I had decided to go to this meeting and asked for an adjournment as I had no legal representation. At about 8:45am I received a phone call from Elaine at the Salford office of Unison to inform me that the meeting had been postponed until Monday 10/03/14 as Mr North was unwell.


 


I am registered Disabled, Diabetic and in constant pain. The additional stress of these events has aspirated my condition. An application for retirement has been made for retirement on ill health grounds on 28/02/14 and is well on the way. The head teacher however has refused to wait for the decision of the Occupational Health Doctor. The Occupational Health doctor has received a copy a health report from my GP and I have an appointment at the Occupational Health for a health assessment 24/03/14.



I am at my wits end. I have been told over the phone that the Dismissal Committee will meet sometime Monday 10/03/14. I am still not legally represented.


I am writing to ask for your help to resolve this very difficult situation.


 


Yours Sincerely


 


Iris E Barlow



p.s. I have had no success sending an e-mail to [email protected]


 


I have tried to get an e-mail address for yourself no one will give it to me.


I have asked them to put me through to you again no success.


 


 


I am attending the meeting on Monday with no representation, when you say colleague has that got to be a colleague from the school or can it be a colleague from church (who is also a friend)

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
It has to be a colleague from the same employment, i.e. employed by the employer that is undertaking this procedure
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


ok thankyou it looks like I'm going it alone. Will I be able to take written notes in with me, I suppose like a script

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
Yes if needed to assist you with what you will say you can do this.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


is there anything inparticular I need to say In relation with there disission

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
well that would be difficult to advise at this stage, you need to see what they say and the reasons for that so you cannot always have an idea in advance. I provided a lot of informaiton in my initial advice that you can use as necessary
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


If I don't get the chance I would like to say a great big thankyou to you and I will certainly tell everybody about your fantastic support I only wish I could use yours services when I go further if needed in the future thankyou

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for your kind words, you are always welcome to get back to me in the future if you need further help, just start your question with 'for Ben Jones' and I will get it. Thanks and best of luck at the meeting
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


Thank you Smile

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
No problem, good night
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

for Ben Jones


Hi Ben as expected I was dismissed I need to appeal within 7 days from the date of the letter. I got the lettter Wednesday leaving only 5 days to reply. Is there a set time for them to give notice for to appeal, after putting in your request for an appeal is there a set time for the appeal hearing? SSP who pays this is it your employer or as I have heard the council (as I work for Salford Education) pay the SSP then they reclaim it from the HMRC? Can I take a solictor to the appeal or do I have to wait until the tribunal? My head teacher says she has spent 24,000 plus on me with Physio, councelling and occupational health. Again I have been told these are being paid for by the council, do I have the right to asked The head teacher for a beakdown of the cost she says she has paid out? Do I have the right to ask her for the minutes of the meeting held in my absence? Do I have the right to ask for my personal notes from the head? Do I have to have written proof about what l have been told about the council paying for me? Do l have the right to ask her to prove she has paid the money she says she has from the school budget, surely there are insurances that cover this kind of thing?

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
Hello, thanks for getting back to me. Unfortunately your question has expired as you must post any follow up queries within 7 days of the date of the original question. If you need any further help on this subject please post it as a new question on our site - you may start it with 'for Ben Jones' so that I get it and deal with it as fast as I can. Many thanks
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


for ben jones hi ben i'm trying to make a payment and it's not excepting the change of card details. my husband set it up last time but he's forgotten the ussername and password XXXXX can i sort this out thank you

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
Hi, please contact customer support by [email protected]

Thanks
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


will do thank you

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
no problem
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


are the support 24-7 l have sent 2 e-mails to them and no reply

Customer: replied 3 years ago.


for ben jones hi ben all sorted payment accepted can we coninue now

Customer: replied 3 years ago.


for ben hi ben time to retire for the night l'll check my e-mails in the morning looking forward to receiving your answer good night

Customer: replied 3 years ago.


hi ben can you answer me now please

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

for ben jones hi Ben I still waiting can you answer me now my payment was taken yesterday l'm in need of your help in ideas what l should out in my dismissal letter that has to be in tomorrow.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

for Ben Jones hi Ben l paid last night for your help and now the're asking me for extra money to talk to a femail Jo why can't l get you you know what is going on with my case

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
Hi, it appears you posted two separate questions earlier with just my name on them but without any content so they were closed down and refunded. To save you more trouble what we could do is continue on this thread but just process the payment on here by rating the new answer separately, as you did last time.



I got the lettter Wednesday leaving only 5 days to reply. Is there a set time for them to give notice for to appeal, after putting in your request for an appeal is there a set time for the appeal hearing?

There is no notice set in law on when they must allow you to appeal, but it is usually done when the decision of the disciplinary is communicated to you and it is common to be given around 5 days to make an appeal. Also there is no set time for when the appeal hearing should be held but it should be done reasonably soon after the appeal is submitted. It would depend on availability of personnel to deal with it but I would say usually 1-2 weeks is common.


SSP who pays this is it your employer or as I have heard the council (as I work for Salford Education) pay the SSP then they reclaim it from the HMRC?

Your employer pays SSP, they can then claim some of it back from the Government.

Can I take a solicitor to the appeal or do I have to wait until the tribunal?

You cannot take a solicitor with you to the appeal hearing, it is only a trade union reo or a colleague that would be allowed. Solicitors only get involved properly at the tribunal stage.

My head teacher says she has spent 24,000 plus on me with Physio, councelling and occupational health. Again I have been told these are being paid for by the council, do I have the right to asked The head teacher for a beakdown of the cost she says she has paid out?

You can do but if you are not being asked to pay for these then you may not necessarily have any legal grounds to request a breakdown. Of course, if this becomes a contentious issue in respect of a claim, they would most likely be expected to submit this breakdown to the tribunal as avidence.

Do I have the right to ask her for the minutes of the meeting held in my absence?

If you were not present, then it would depend on whether this was a confidential meeting held behind closed doors to make a decision on you. You could argue that it is personal data about you and that you should have access to it under the Data Protection Act and can tell them you are making a subject access request and would want to be provided with a copy for your records.

Do I have the right to ask for my personal notes from the head?

As above – it would be personal data which you can request a copy of.

Do I have to have written proof about what l have been told about the council paying for me?
Do l have the right to ask her to prove she has paid the money she says she has from the school budget, surely there are insurances that cover this kind of thing?

Already answered above.


I hope this clarifies your position.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


for ben jones hi ben have you got any of my messages since l pais last night

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
I got the messages above, and a couple of separate questions which just referred to me by name but which were closed and refunded, so you have not actually made any additional payments as it stands as these were refunded to you. Did you get my response to your queries above?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


No I didn't get any responce So how do I get back to you as you know my case and I really don't want to explain everything all over again to someone else thank you

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
Hi, my answer is above, timed 3/16/2014 at 6:57 PM, I will post it here again:

Hi, it appears you posted two separate questions earlier with just my name on them but without any content so they were closed down and refunded. To save you more trouble what we could do is continue on this thread but just process the payment on here by rating the new answer separately, as you did last time.



I got the lettter Wednesday leaving only 5 days to reply. Is there a set time for them to give notice for to appeal, after putting in your request for an appeal is there a set time for the appeal hearing?

There is no notice set in law on when they must allow you to appeal, but it is usually done when the decision of the disciplinary is communicated to you and it is common to be given around 5 days to make an appeal. Also there is no set time for when the appeal hearing should be held but it should be done reasonably soon after the appeal is submitted. It would depend on availability of personnel to deal with it but I would say usually 1-2 weeks is common.


SSP who pays this is it your employer or as I have heard the council (as I work for Salford Education) pay the SSP then they reclaim it from the HMRC?

Your employer pays SSP, they can then claim some of it back from the Government.

Can I take a solicitor to the appeal or do I have to wait until the tribunal?

You cannot take a solicitor with you to the appeal hearing, it is only a trade union reo or a colleague that would be allowed. Solicitors only get involved properly at the tribunal stage.

My head teacher says she has spent 24,000 plus on me with Physio, councelling and occupational health. Again I have been told these are being paid for by the council, do I have the right to asked The head teacher for a beakdown of the cost she says she has paid out?

You can do but if you are not being asked to pay for these then you may not necessarily have any legal grounds to request a breakdown. Of course, if this becomes a contentious issue in respect of a claim, they would most likely be expected to submit this breakdown to the tribunal as avidence.

Do I have the right to ask her for the minutes of the meeting held in my absence?

If you were not present, then it would depend on whether this was a confidential meeting held behind closed doors to make a decision on you. You could argue that it is personal data about you and that you should have access to it under the Data Protection Act and can tell them you are making a subject access request and would want to be provided with a copy for your records.

Do I have the right to ask for my personal notes from the head?

As above – it would be personal data which you can request a copy of.

Do I have to have written proof about what l have been told about the council paying for me?
Do l have the right to ask her to prove she has paid the money she says she has from the school budget, surely there are insurances that cover this kind of thing?

Already answered above.


I hope this clarifies your position.

Related Employment Law Questions