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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 47904
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I have been employed by my employers 7 years however

Customer Question

I have been employed by my employers 7 years however I am currently working my notice period as I have another job.
Last week I was off sick days. I would normally be entitled to full pay whilst off sick however my employers have withheld pay. There is a line in the handbook which say that they "May decide to withhold sick pay" when working through my notice period.
I have a good record, I don't have any warnings on my file and generally thought I had a good relationship with them until this.
I believe that I am being punished . My line manager carried out a return to work interview when I returned from absence but failed to mention I was not being paid. He is now claiming he forgot to tell me and that it was the area manager who insisted I wasn't to be paid.
Where do I stand legally? I believe I have been unfairly targeted and see no reason why they should have decided to withhold pay.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Ben Jones :

, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. can you tell me have you received sick pay in the past year

JACUSTOMER-cdf9e0ch- :

Yes I have.

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.

JACUSTOMER-cdf9e0ch- :

ok

Ben Jones :

Apologies slight delay, I experienced some temporary connection issues earlier on. All seems to be resolved now so I can continue with my advice.

It will only be possible to lawfully withhold contractual sick pay in circumstances set out in the employee's contract or contractual sickness policy, or where the employee has otherwise agreed in writing. Otherwise the employer's action in withholding sick pay will amount to an unlawful deduction from wages.

Generally, the employer would be expected to include specific conditions under which it would be able to withhold sick pay, such as failure to provide medical evidence, etc. However, a blanket policy allowing them to withhold sick pay with no good reason is likely to be unfair and could amount to unlawful deduction of wages.

In order to try and resolve this, the employer should be contacted in writing, advised that this is being treated as unlawful deduction of wages and ask them to pay back the money within 7 days. Advise them that if they fail to pay the money that is owed, legal proceedings could follow.

If the employer does not return the money as requested, the following options are available:



  1. Employment Tribunal - the time limit to claim is only 3 months from the date the deductions were made. To make the claim, form ET1 needs to be completed and submitted - you can find it here: https://www.employmenttribunals.service.gov.uk/employment-tribunals

  2. County Court – this is an alternative way to claim and the advantage is that the time limit is a much longer 6 years and is usually used if you are out of time to claim in the Tribunal. The claim can be made online by going to: www.moneyclaim.gov.uk.


Hopefully by warning the employer you are aware of your rights and are not going to hesitate taking further action they will be prompted to reconsider their position and work towards resolving this.

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

Ben Jones :

, I see you have accessed and read my answer to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else in relation to this? I just need to know whether to close the question or not? Thanks