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taratill
taratill, Solicitor
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 6307
Experience:  15 years experience of advising on employment law matters
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After 2 years of good work, My manager, suddenly started sending

Resolved Question:

After 2 years of good work, My manager, suddenly started sending me emails where he raises I am creating or migh create issues to the proyecy with a personal decision I took 4 months ago. The decision was to terminate my friendship with another Team Leader (TL) that works within the project. I have repeated in numerous time to my manager that this is a personal decision that has not and will not affect my work of hers (numbers show this is true) as I am professional.
The TL I mentioned above has an history of been rude.
Yesterday, I was speaking in my office with one analyst managed by this Team Leader. The Team Leader came and interrupted by saying "sorry to interrupt your lovely chat but X analyst has some work to do". To this I responded, "this is not a lovely chat, FYI". The TL escalated the issue to my manager and I recieved the below email. I need advise on how to respond to this email for the record and for a possible legal action as I believe my response could be a reason for him to to renew my contract.
Email from my manager recieved yesterday:
Hi Isela,
Could you please consider that the Taskforce has a lot of work to get through and regardless of whether someone is staying or leaving they are contracted to provide a service while they are here.
Not sure if you are aware but David is working a half day today and has only just started working following the time he spent talking with you.
Also you have stated that you will work with Izabela professionally and from what I have been informed your response to her polite request to get David to his desk and working was not professional.
Fyi – this is the IM I sent to Iza
hi - can you please have a word with David....since he arrived he has been talking to Isela in her room and I doubt he's done any work yet. in order for him to have a 1/2 day he'll be here till at least 8pm at this rate! We need him to be carrying out the BvD parallel checks he volunteered to do and as of now has not done one. thanks
I trust you understand.
My proposed answer:
For the records, I feel in need to reply to your email below.
Suddenly, after almost 2 years of me working under your management, with no complaints whatsoever from your side, you have been sending me emails to raise issues that are not work related or that in any way have affected the project (see attached chain). I asked you numerous times via email and in person to respect this matter and seize referring to my relationship with Izabela. This is not work related and has not affected mine or my teams performance as both the numbers of myself and my teams demonstrate. I have been nothing but professional in my interactions with Izabela. You clearly keep on insisting with this matter and as my manager on a daily basis, since I came back from my holidays, you are causing significant stress on my professional environment with nonprofessional matters.
For the record Izabela said to me “once you finished your lovely chat” David had to return. David immediately return to his desk and all I said in a professional tone is that “FYI this is not a lovely chat” as this was work related. I would need you to explain me what is the unprofessional nature of my comment?
On the matter of David I fully agree with you about employees that still work here need to perform and our meeting was strictly work related.
I would like to ask you for the very last time to respect certain personal boundaries within the working environment.
Isela
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  taratill replied 2 years ago.
taratill :

Hello my name is ***** ***** I am happy to help you today. How long exactly have you worked there for and what would you like to know about this situation?

Customer:

Hi, thanks

Customer:

In November I will be 2 years working for this agency

Customer:

I would like you to review my response and advise if it is leaglly correct

Customer:

appropiate

taratill :

Hi so can I just clarify a few things. Did you have a personal relationship with the team leader in question?

Customer:

yeah we were best friends until she started been rude to me

taratill :

Sorry I just need to be clear are you both female, the question you sent is not very easy to read.

Customer:

i nominated her for the TL role and it seems went straigh to her head

Customer:

Correct, both females... no romantic relationship, just very good friends

taratill :

Thank you .

taratill :

Has she worked there for longer than you or less time?

Customer:

maybe 1 month longer. She is a team leader and I am a Senior Team leader

taratill :

Ok thanks, ***** ***** explain briefly what has happened to lead you to want to write an email to your employer about this?

Customer:

I dont understand

Customer:

In my explanation I mentioned he started emailing me about this... after 4 months now he thinks is or can be an issue

Customer:

I have the impression he is trying to make me to resign so he can put her in my place

taratill :

So is David your boss. I'm really sorry but your explanation is difficult to follow which is why I'm asking the questions.

Customer:

she was brough to this job by his best mate

Customer:

DAvid is his analyst

Customer:

DAvid is her analysts, reports into her

taratill :

Ok the difficulty you have is that with less than 2 years service in the UK you can be dismissed for any reason so long as you are not being discriminated against on the grounds of your sex, race, age, religion, disability preganancy or for raising a health and safety complaint. If you make a complaint to your employer about this then potentially you could be dismissed with notice and there would be no recourse in law unless you think that discrimination on one of those grounds applies.

taratill :

You can, of course send an email to say that you believe that you are being treated unfairly and that you have not let your fall out affect your work but there is a danger that this could lead your employer to take some sort of action against you.

Customer:

Thanks, ***** ***** is that I think he is pushing me to quit

taratill :

I understand that. You need to try to hold on until you have 2 years service before doing anything. If you are forced out after 2 years then you can claim constructive dismissal. Before 2 years there is no claim unless discrimination applies (and I don't think that it does here).

Customer:

I understand. I dont know If I can hold it for so long, I broke down for the first time in almost 2 years our of stress. He sent me in 1 day almost 10 emails (responses back and forward) and then next day he raises another issue re me been rude to this person

taratill :

Is there a HR department?

Customer:

They just sent me a new contract to renue my contract until the 23 dec 2014

taratill :

That's positive. Is there a HR department.

Customer:

I work on a 3 month rolling contract

Customer:

No HR. It is an agency that offer services to a Bank

taratill :

But no over all boss or Personnel department of any kind?

Customer:

Yes, there is his boss, but from expirience he usually refers me back to someone else. A person that I cannot trust unfortunatelly. He is friend with my manager

Customer:

I have told my manager in emails that he is causing me anxiety and stress... Yesterday I couldnt sleep because I am not sure how to react to this attack unrelated to my performance, which is very good.

taratill :

Ok well if you have said you don't want to engage any more in emails that do not relate to work and you have raised it at a higher level there does not seem to be a lot more you can do . As I said try to hang on in there until you have been employed for 2 years as before that you do not have full employment law rights.

taratill :

If you have any further questions please do ask. If I have answered your question I would be grateful if you would take the time to rate my answer. Thank you and all the best.

Customer:

2 years- even if I am contractor?

Customer:

not permanent employee?

taratill :

That's a different argument to have. If you are a contractor for a long period of time and you are treated as an employee and employment tribunal may find that you are employee for employment law purposes. https://www.gov.uk/employment-status/overview gives you a brief overview of the situation. Simply put if you are treated as an employee an employer cannot evade employment law rights by saying you are a contractor.

Customer:

Ok- im reading now. Just unsure of how I am not protected under Law eventhough he is causing me stress. How to hang in there for more than a month under stress and anxiety.

taratill :

There is no claim in employment law which is free standing for stress and anxiety. If this results in a personal injury and you suffer a financial loss then there could be a civil claim, but this would be highly unusual.

Customer:

Ok- I do not think it would be good for my state of mind to accept signing a new contract with them under these circunstances. I do want to work here but it would be unreasonable to sign up

taratill :

Well that is obviously a decision only you can make.

Customer:

Another question, If I dont answer his email, can he use my non response as acceptance of his statements?

taratill :

No not responding does not equate to accepting the allegations. I would suggest you do send an email to state that this is not relevant to work and you consider it to amount to a harassment and to ask him to stop.

taratill :

Please let me know if there is anything further you would like to know about this. I would be grateful if you would take the time to rate my answer as I am not otherwise credited for my time.

Customer:

just re- reading what you have wrote, I dont want to accuse him of harrasment because his email is very smart and does not show harrasment

Customer:

would you recomend another wording please

Customer:

Sure- I will rate you at the end

taratill :

You can state that you do not consider it to be relevant to your work and that, given that it is not work related would he please stop corresponding with you in this manner.

Customer:

Ok- thats clear. Many thanks for your help.

taratill :

No problem all the best for the future.

Customer:

Many thanks

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