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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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I have worked for 15 years in a company without a written contract.

Resolved Question:

I have worked for 15 years in a company without a written contract. Today they have arranged for an expert to visit and are discussing issuing employee contracts. Can they make me sign it if the terms are different to those I have been working under? What if I don't like the contract - can they sack me?
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.

taratill :

They cannot alter your terms and condiitons when issuing your contract. They can issue you a contract which reflects the terms on which you are currently engaged.

taratill :

If you are not happy with the contract you can refuse to sign it and say why you are not happy. You cannot be dismissed if your objections are reasonable as this would amount to unfair dismissal.

taratill :

If you have any further specific concerns please do let me know.

taratill :

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:

If I have no written contract, how am I to prove what terms I have been working under? I have previously not used a job title, for instance, but I think they will be deciding these and therefore leaving me open to the possibility of being on a different rate of pay. I have always purchased materials and sold them on. It now looks as if they want me to be "sales team". "Purchasing Team" may be salaried higher and I will not know, or have the right to know if they say we are not comparible.

taratill :

Well they absolutely do not have the right to reduce your pay. Your job description should reflect what you have actually been doing. If it seems they are trying to change your job then you need to tell them that it amounts to a change in terms and conditions and that you are not prepared to accept this. Ultimately if it went to a tribunal you would have to give oral evidence as to your terms and conditions, supported by wage slips and any other documentation you might have.

Customer:

They will not reduce my pay, but they may decide to pay someone else more. They may indeed be getting paid more than me now, but I don't know this for sure. Basically I have gone from being a two person operation 15 years ago, with myself and an office manager, to 7 employees with various titles and contracts, and I have now been designated "sales team". Of course, I am stupid and do not belong to a union, either.

taratill :

You cannot prevent your employer from engaging other member of staff whether you have a written contract or not. Your role should not be reduced though. If it is you should raise a formal grievance. If your role is eroded you may have the right to claim constructive dismissal.

Customer:

Thank you T. I will rate you now :)

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