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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 47415
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Good morning, My former employer is accusing me (in a letter)

Resolved Question:

Good morning,
My former employer is accusing me (in a letter) of breach of my fiduciary duty. This is after I won a case in employment tribunal and I was awarded an amount for my unpayed salaries.
I didn't have any contract or mandate that I could breach and the alligations are not true to my knowlege. They are basicly saying that they have a potential claim and are willing to drop it if I don't ask for my money awarded by Employment Tribunal.
What should I respond to this?
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 are you supposed to have breached your fiduciary duty?
Customer: Hello Ben,
Customer: Hello Ben, thank you for your assistance! For six months i was registered as a director with Companies House , for the company, but I didn't have any contract of service as a director or any mandate. The letter says that I acted in the detriment of the company and I breached my fiduciary duty and mention some contracts with suppliers that were signed before me be oming a director and they were not signed by me. Obviously the aligations are not true from my point of view. I suppose they use that to intimidate me and not chase what Employment Tribunal awards. Please let me know if you need further details.
Ben Jones :

Fiduciary duties are actually implied duties that one person owes to another where a specific relationship of trust and confidence exists. A common situation is that of a director, who owes these duties to their company, regardless of what contract or mandate is in place.


 


These duties can be summarised as follows:



  • No conflict – you must not place yourself in a position where your own interests conflict with those of the other party or where there is a real possibility that this will happen.

  • No profit - you must not profit from your position at the expense of the other party.

  • Undivided loyalty - you must not place yourself in a position where your duty to another customer conflicts with your duty to the other party.

  • Confidentiality - you must use or disclose information obtained in confidence from the other party for their benefit only.


 


So whilst there is nothing topping your ex-employer from trying to accuse you of breaching such duties, if they were to make a claim against you they would obviously need to provide evidence that what they claim is true. They could be bluffing at this stage and just trying to scare you off – you have the right to ask them to provide further details and evidence of what they believe you have breached but do not be put off by pursuing them for what you are already owed and have won at tribunal – these are two entirely separate issues and a breach of fiduciary duties, even if real, would not preclude you from pursuing them for your unpaid wages.

Customer:

None of the mentioned topics are applying to my case. They mention a potential claim that the company might have against me. However the letter that I received states that they won't proceed with fileing the claim if I agree not to ask for the amount that the Employment Tribunal awarded me.

Customer:

This is their proposed settlement. And gave me 7 days to respond. How should I respond to that?

Ben Jones :

it really depends on whether they have a valid claim to take the matter further against you. You are legally entitled to the money you have been awarded so you can still proceed with that and try to recover them.

Ben Jones :

But I cannot say whether you should definitely accept it or reject it because I cannot guarantee what their next move would be and how much merit any potential claim would have

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? Thanks

Ben Jones :

I see from your rating that you were not entirely satisfied with the service I have provided you with. Please remember that you are only rating the service you received, not the contents of my answer. As a lawyer I have to be honest and quote the law as it is and it may not necessarily be the answer you wanted to receive - unfortunately there is little I can do about this. My main priority is to ensure that you leave our site satisfied. Therefore, please get back to me with any further questions you may have or let me know if I can clarify anything further for you and improve your rating. Thank you

Customer:

Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX no further questions. My rating will remain the same. The details of the fiduciary duties I got them myself from hmrc webside. It seems that the answer os more of a general one, and not particularly for this case. What I was looking for in my initial question was a professional formulated answer which I could use as response. Thing that I haven'y got, hence my rating.

Ben Jones :

ok , but you only supplied me with a few lines of information so it is impossible to formulate a 'detailed response based on that ...

Customer:

Dear Ben,

Customer:

You are the expert on employment law, shall you need further details to formulate an answer to my question, I am more the happy to provide it.

Customer:

It is my best intention to give a positive rationg to your service as soon as I receive a useful answer. I am rating an expert advice not the chating itself

Ben Jones :

ok you mention that none of the fiduciary duties applied to your case and in that event, the employer simply cannot make a successful claim against you for breach of fiduciary duties, unless they can actually provide evidence that this was the case. But you then ask me whether to accept or reject their proposal - I cannot make that decision for you, I can only advise you on hat may happen if you do or you son't. If you do, they may try and seek a full and final settlement where you are prevented from pursuing the further for the money owed and they take no action against you. If you reject it, you can go on to pursue the money you have won at tribunal but that would not stop the employer from trying to be difficult and making a claim for the alleged breach, even if it had no merit - they can try their luck at least, even if they lose and their claim is struck out. The problem with advising on whether they will be successful is impossible for me to predict, because I do not know what evidence they may have and what witness evidence they may put forward and in the majority, this is what a court would look at. However, if you are confident that you have not breached any fiduciary duties, based on what a fiduciary duty is, then you can call their bluff, reject the proposal, pursue what is legally owed to you and deal with any potential claim they make knowing that you can defend t

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