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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 49440
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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EMPLOYEE OF A COMPANY IN THE ROLE OF THE COMPANY'S COMPANY

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I AM AN EMPLOYEE OF A COMPANY IN THE ROLE OF THE COMPANY'S COMPANY SECRETARY AND OFFICE MANAGER. I HAVE ALWAYS HAD ACCESS TO THE ACCOUNTS AND BANK ACCOUNT. I AM A 10% SHAREHOLDER IN THE COMPANY. MY BOSS IS TRYING TO MAKE ME REDUNDANT AND SAYS MY SHARES ARE WORTHLESS? I TOOK ADVICE FROM A THIRD PARTY FOR ADVICE ON THE VALUE OF THE SHARES AND NOW MY BOSS IS CHANGING THE DIRECTION FROM REDUNDANCY TO ***** HE SAYS IT IS GROSS MISCONDUCT THAT I SHOWED THE MANAGMENT ACCOUNTS TO THE THIRD PARTY WITHOUT THEIR PERMISSION.
I AM EXTREMELY STRESSED AND UPSET WITH THIS MATTER.
MY BOSS CALLED ME ON 2ND JANUARY TO INFORM ME THAT HE WAS TO MAKE ME REDUNDANT WHILST I HAD A DAYS HOLIDAY DUE TO ME BEING AT CHRISTIES CANCER HOSPITAL WITH MY PARTNER. I HAVE WORKED FOR THE COMPANY FOR 25 YEARS PLUS

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.

Your question overlaps two separate areas of law - employment and corporate. I can certainly deal with the employment side of things,, which means I just cannot answer the shares question, for which you need to post a separate query for a corporate lawyer. Is that ok!

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Hi yes I have paid 38.oo what does that cover?
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Im sorry what have received for 38.00?
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Is this a scam?????

Hi there sorry i was in meetings by the time you had replied. Obviously you have not received anything yet because I have not answered your question. I was initially checking if you are happy just for me to deal with the employment side of things, considering I cannot answer the shares matter? If you are then I can continue

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
please is the 38 the only payment for your reply.
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
When will I receive a response. ?

Yes it is the only payment.

Based on hat has happened so far it would appear that the employer is intent on pushing you out, whatever it takes. They keep finding different reasons for doing so and they are moving the goalposts between redundancy and misconduct.

The good news is that if an employee has been continuously employed with their employer for at least 2 years they will be protected against unfair dismissal. This means that to fairly dismiss them the employer has to show that there was a potentially fair reason for dismissal and that a fair dismissal procedure was followed.

According to the Employment Rights Act 1996 there are five separate reasons that an employer could rely on to show that a dismissal was fair: conduct, capability, redundancy, illegality or some other substantial reason (SOSR). The employer will not only need to show that the dismissal was for one of those reasons, but also justify that it was appropriate and reasonable to use in the circumstances. In addition, they need to ensure that a fair dismissal procedure was followed and that the outcome was one that a reasonable employer would have come to in the circumstances.

They may say there is redundancy but they have to justify that there is indeed a genuine redundancy situation and then follow a fair procedure.

In relation to the allegations of gross misconduct, you showing the accounts to someone for personal advice on an issue which they have created has not impacted the company or cost them anything. So to argue that it is gross misconduct will be difficult. At worst it may warrant a warning to inform you that this is not acceptable and that you do not do it again, however they should not go ahead and dismiss for this.

It is important to note that if they wanted to dismiss you then can do it and you cannot actually prevent that, however you can certainly challenge their decision and the reasons for it and you can consider an unfair dismissal claim in the employment tribunal.

Please take a quick second to leave a positive rating for the service so far by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars above. I can continue answering follow up questions and in particular can also discuss the steps you need to take in the event they do go ahead and dismiss. There is no extra cost for this - leaving your rating now will not close the question and means we can still continue this discussion. Thank you

Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question and if you need me to discuss the next steps in more detail? In the meantime please take a quick second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars above. The question will not close and I can continue with my advice as discussed. Thank you

Hello, not sure if you are having trouble seeing my posts? Do you need any further assistance or are you happy with the response to your query? I look forward to hearing from you. Thanks

Customer: replied 28 days ago.
Hi thanks for your reply which is very helpful. What procedure does he have to follow to dismiss me? I have just submitted a sick note for four weeks. If I accept the settlement figure of £20k then I would have to sign and accept this with no comeback. This amount is almost the same as redundancy but at least I am.not agreeing to the settlement. I have give over twenty five years of my life to this firm and do not feel my position is redundant. Thank you. *****

In terms of procedure, alleged misconduct is a common reason for dismissing an employee. It could be either due to a single serious act of misconduct or a series of less serious acts over a period of time.

In order to justify that dismissal on grounds of misconduct was fair, the law requires that the employer:

· Conducts a reasonable investigation

· Follows a fair disciplinary procedure

· Has genuine belief the employee was guilty; and

· Shows that dismissal was a decision that a reasonable employer would have taken in the circumstances

In addition, the employer is expected to follow the ACAS Code of Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance procedures, which can be incorporated into their own disciplinary policy. Altogether, it means that a fair disciplinary procedure should be conducted as follows:

1. Investigation – the employer must conduct a reasonable investigation first. This could include interviewing the employee or other witnesses who may have relevant information. What is reasonable depends entirely on the circumstances and the nature and seriousness of the allegations. The more serious or complex these are, the more detailed the investigation needs to be.

2. Disciplinary hearing - if the investigation provides sufficient evidence of misconduct, the employee can be invited to attend a formal disciplinary hearing. They must be given prior notice of the hearing, including details of the allegations and any evidence to be used against them. They have the legal right to be accompanied at the hearing by a trade union representative or a colleague.

3. Decision - following the disciplinary hearing and once the employer has had a chance to consider the employee’s response, they can make a decision on the outcome. If the employer holds a genuine belief that the employee was guilty, then they can go ahead and formally sanction them.

4. Penalty – this has to be a sanction, which a reasonable employer would have taken in the circumstances. When deciding on the appropriate penalty, the employer should consider the nature and seriousness of the offence and the employee's length of service and disciplinary record. Unless the offence was one of gross misconduct, ACAS recommends that the employee is issued with a written warning for a first offence.

Does this clarify things for you a bit more?

Ben Jones and other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 23 days ago.
very helpful. My employer has made an offer of a settlement/severance for £20K we are trying to increase that to a more reasonable amount. Hopefully, he will agree, he knows I have always put his company first and worked to move his offices when I should have had an operation for breast cancer. thanks, ***** *****

You are most welcome, hope you get the deal you are after