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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
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My company are getting everyone to fill in a chart on a Monday

Resolved Question:

My company are getting everyone to fill in a chart on a Monday for the overtime they will be doing that week, and if they miss one of those times they put on this chart, the company have said they will stop that person doing overtime the next week. Are they allowed to do that? Also I thought overtime is optional as stated in my contract, so can I refuse to fill this chart in?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. What does your contract say about this and overtime in general?

Customer:

It says, it is a condition of employment that all employees are required to work overtime on weekdays and weekends when so requested. The company will endeavour to give as much advance warning as possible of the requirement to work overtime and will consider reasonable grounds for refusal. The company will determine the requirements for overtime .the numbers and job categories of those required, the number of hours required and the work to be performed.

Customer:

This is just something that has started last week and the whole factory is open for anyone to do overtime.

Customer:

Nothing in our contract about us having to say what overtime we will be doing during that week, and nothing about not being able to do overtime the week after

Ben Jones :

Hi, sorry I had left the office by the time you replied.

As overtime id not something which is guaranteed under your contract and it is given out at the employer’s discretion, the employer can potentially stop that person’s overtime if they really wanted to. The employer only has to give you the hours you are contracted to work, but anything on top of that, assuming it is not guaranteed in any way, is left at the employer’s discretion.

Whilst overtime will generally be optional, your contract does state that the employer can ask you to work additional hours as requested, so if you refuse to do any hours which you have been asked to do, in the absence of a reasonable reason for refusal, it could amount to breach of contract on your part.

I would advise against refusing to fill in the chart because it can be a refusal to follow a reasonable management instruction. So if you have been asked and have agreed to do certain overtime and you need to document it, then you should do so as requested. Sadly the employer can stop you from doing additional overtime in the subsequent week(s) because you are not actually guaranteed any at any time.

Hope this clarifies your position? If you could please let me know that would be great, thank you

Customer:

Yes I think that basically answers my questions, thank you very much

Ben Jones :

you are welcome, all the best

Customer:

I keep trying to rate your service, but everytime I press the smiley face, and pop up keeps saying you haven't finished answering.

Ben Jones :

Sorry there is an intermittent bug we get, we can process it manually if needed, thanks

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