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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 46773
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I was working at a school for an agency when quite suddenly

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I was working at a school for an agency when quite suddenly I was told through a call from the agency shortly after leaving on a Friday evening that I would not be returning on the Monday as 'things weren't working out'! I was more than surprised at this as things had been going So well and the agency were unable to get specific reasons for this from the school.
I am angry that I have been prevented from earning a living when the reason given makes no sense at all and also that it could impact me negatively with my agency. I returned to the school on the Monday and was told that there was 'a mis-communication' and that as long term staff had returned from sick leave they could cover me 'in different ways'. This is completely different from the original message but also not true-only one member of long term staff has returned and the school got another agency worker to cover my role in that same class. The other worker is not expected back until the end of May! She could only stay for one week and as I was told I would be there until the summer term possibly longer I am mystified, angry and feel compelled to find out what is behind these groundless comments. Please help.
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 did you work there for?

Customer:

Hi Ben, Just a few weeks but things were going great!

Ben Jones :

I am afraid you will have very limited rights in this situation. First of as an agency worker you do not have any protection against unfair dismissal – you can be dismissed at any time and even without notice as long as the agency is working within the terms of any agreement they have with you. Agency workers are usually taken on due to their flexibility, in a sense that they can be hired and fired with minimal notice. There is simply no job security when you are an agency worker and there is no need to provide a fair or even genuine reason to terminate your assignment.


 


Even if you were an employee of the school you would not be protected against unfair dismissal until you have at least 2 years’ service with them, so again you could have been dismissed very easily and legally without being able to challenge their decision.

Customer:

Hi Ben, thank you for your answer. I know this is the case as an agency worker but where reasons are given that will impact my ability to get work from the agency due to this negative report which is totally unsubstantiated; then even the 'limited rights' you speak of I will use to defend myself. I fail to see how the school's reporting and thanking the agency for sending them someone who' knows what they are doing' compares to the later report as outlined can be taken seriously and the agency surely should be asking some questions of the school? I know they want the contract so are unlikely to delve too deeply on my behalf but this is totally unfair and simply not true. For example on that same Friday, I had put together the music they will be using for their summer performance-hardly the work of someone for whom things aren't working out. My belief is perhaps they were working too well and I inadvertently put someone's nose out of joint!

Ben Jones :

To mention that 'things were not working out' may be something you disagree with but it is not something you can challenge legally. This would be a subjective matter - you may have thought everything was going swimmingly, whereas the school may have had specific concerns or issue which they did not believe made you the suitable person for the post - it is your opinion against theirs and they are entitled to think and say that things did not work out even if you disagree with this. It is not the same as providing a false reference

Customer:

That may well be so but none of the staff I worked with agree with middle management's decision! It was not me who thought things were going well- they reported the same on more than one occasion.

Customer:

Anyway thank you for your responses.

Customer:

Regards

Customer:

Lioness

Ben Jones :

I understand but legally this cannot be challenged I am afraid, also the other employees' opinions have no bearing whatsoever on this - it is the employer that has the final decision, whether other employees agree with it or not

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

Customer:

No thank you Ben, it;s just as I thought.

Customer:

NO thanks Ben, it's just as I thought.

Customer:

No thanks Ben, it's just as I thought. Regards

Ben Jones :

You are welcome, all the best

Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 46773
Experience: Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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