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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 48158
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Due to a numerous but defamatory internal E Mail I have been

Customer Question

Due to a numerous but defamatory internal E Mail I have been asked to accept severance pay to the end of my contract. I was called into the meeting without notification or a witness and threatened with being sued or redundancy as other options. I know I was in the wrong but not sure where I stand legally
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.

Please can you tell me a bit more about the email in question. Please can you also tell me how long you have worked there?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi
I've worked there for five years. The mail was a play on the owners name. Instead of Chris I replaced it with something like Christian and described him as a design guru as he had some bags printed for his hotel The Bell Rock but I put Bell end, very childish and wrong.
Along with this I have had many disputes with the MD and he has provided this as evidence to get rid of me.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.

Thank you, ***** ***** long have you worked there?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'm not denying anything just concerned as I have no official warnings against me
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.

I can see that you mentioned working there for 5 years. Please leave it with me. I am in court for the rest of today so will prepare my advice in a while and get back to you at the earliest opportunity. There is no need to wait here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Thank you.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.

Many thanks for your patience. In the circumstances the employer could consider going down the disciplinary route because your actions are likely to have amounted to misconduct. Whether this is enough to dismiss you is something which may be slightly questionable but in reality there is nothing stopping them from doing so. It just means that if you disagree with it and wish to challenge it you may do so by claiming unfair dismissal once the dismissal takes place. If they try and go down the redundancy route instead then they will need to be able to justify that there was a genuine redundancy situation and that they had followed a fair procedure. So if they are going to try and engineer a redundancy just to try and get rid of you, then it may also potentially be challengeable.

Therefore, you do have the option of refusing the severance package and fighting for your position but the likelihood is that they may try and dismiss you anyway. If that happens and you challenge the dismissal you would potentially end up with a compensation package anyway. So it is up to you if you want to walk away now and negotiate something which you would be prepared to accept or stay and see what happens, knowing that you could potentially challenge their decision as well.

This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the rights you have to challenge a potential dismissal, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you

Ben Jones and other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Many thanks. I will wait to see what is happening as I have had no official letter as yet. I know they have been in touch with Lawrite to make sure they do it properly. The owner told me to accept severance or redundancy and I can walk away without anything being held against me reference wise, if I don't they'll probably sue and mention things in references.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.

They can't really sue you for anything so don#'t worry about that but they can refuse to issue a reference or if they do - they can mention what happened. S if you want security in terms of knowing you are guaranteed a settlement and to avoid a negative reference then you may wish to consider taking the offer now

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Once again many thanks, ***** ***** he could sue for defamatory remarks and being libelous so that makes me feel better.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.

oh don't worry about that, it is just empty threats, it costs thousands to sue for that and it is hardly ever pursued unless you have a major image to protect and the remarks have been made widely public - don't worry about it