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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 46182
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Hi! I went back to work after 6 months maternity leave and

Resolved Question:

Hi! I went back to work after 6 months maternity leave and asked for a flexible solution; it looks like It might not be confirmed; I have worked for the same company 3 years now; what do I do if they say my request is not working out?
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. What are you hoping to achieve?

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Have you put this to the HR department

Customer:

Hi Ben, again, it was only an informal chat I had with my manager, and he said that it is really hard to accommodate my request; I have started working for them in 2011; at interview stage it was agreed that I would have worked early shifts Monday to Friday as I have an elder child whom at that time was in nursery; my daughter is now in school; my then manager did never give me trouble, I always had my Mon to Fri rota and it did work; while I was away on mat leave the manager left; now with two kids I asked to do Mon to fri and stick to 8 working hour a day, so that I can leave the work place, travel back home and pick up the kids; my now 7 months old baby is in day nursery from 10 am to 4pm, when I pick him up after the school run with my daughter; conditions of my flexible requests were that I would do some admin work from home which I am doing, and be available from time to time over the weekends; so far for my 3 months trial period of this request I worked 2 sundays; what I want to find out is if the employer does not confirm my request for flexible based on the claim that it is hard to cover the shifts at the weekend because managers have to coberchild friendly work pattern, can I take them to an employment tribunal and have them ruling in my favour?

Customer:

so far for my 3 months trial period of this request I worked 2 sundays; what I want to find out is if the employer does not confirm my request for flexible child friendly work pattern, based on their claim that the other managers have to fill in my absence, can I take them to an employment tribunal and have them ruling in my favour?

Ben Jones :

Ok thank you leave it with me I need to look up a few things and then get my advice ready.I will post back on here when done there is no need to wait and you will receive an email when I have responded.

Customer:

ok thanks! sorry the last bit of message was muddled up, baby on my lap and writing at the same time!

Customer:

waiting to hear from you!

Customer:

by the way, I have signed up with GMB union 2 years ago if you think I might ask for their support as well, I just wanted to find a quick answer!

Ben Jones :

Many thanks for your patience. When a formal flexible working request is made, an employer can only reject it on a limited number of grounds. These are:



  • Planned structural changes

  • The burden of additional costs

  • A detrimental impact on quality

  • The inability to recruit additional staff

  • A detrimental impact on performance

  • The inability to reorganise work among existing staff

  • A detrimental effect on ability to meet customer demand

  • Lack of work during the periods the employee proposes to work


 


In addition, the employer has a duty to explain their rejection in writing. They must state why the specific business ground applies in the circumstances and include the key facts about their decision. These should be accurate and relevant to the reason used.


 


However, when selecting the ground for refusal the test is a subjective one on the part of the employer. If the employer considers that one of the grounds applies, then the test is satisfied. The test does not create any requirement of reasonableness into the employer's judgment. It would appear that only if the employer's view is based on incorrect facts, could the decision actually be challenged.


 


Therefore, if the employer has not relied on one of the set grounds to justify their refusal, or the facts they have used are incorrect or unreasonable, the decision can be appealed first before a formal grievance is raised. If that does not help, a claim can be made to an employment tribunal. The available grounds to challenge their decision are:



  • The employer failed to hold a meeting, notify their decision or offer a right of appeal

  • The reason for refusal was not for one of the allowed reasons

  • The rejection was based on incorrect facts


 


The claim should be presented to the tribunal within 3 months of either the procedural breach or of the date on which the employee is notified of the appeal decision.


 


So this is how the law in this area looks like and a claim can only be made on the above grounds.

Customer:

ok, thanks Ben. I will have anyway a meeting in April at the end of the trail period. I might get in touch with the union and see if I can get a representative to attend the meeting with me. thanks for your help!

Ben Jones :

you are most welcome, I hope you get to resolve this eventually

Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 46182
Experience: Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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