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Jenny
Jenny, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 6307
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor specialising in Employment Law and general legal matters. Please start your question For Jenny Only
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I am classified as an independent Contractor

Customer Question

I am classified as an independent Contractor but signed a contract with a recruitment agency Execom to work with Ausenco Engineers for 12 months. I went on holidays on 20th December 2012 oversea to be with my partner and family and we returned back to Australia on 20th January 2013 so i could restart work on Wednesday 23rd January 2013. When I got into work was informed at 10am that my contract had finished due to no work. My contract says that I be given one weeks notice at which the Manager at Ausenco informed me they told recruitment agency last Monday 16th Jan 2013. I never got told or contacted and if I had would have stayed oversea with partner and family. Contract was to expire on 6th March 2013 and working a 40 hour week as agreed maximum.

Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jenny replied 4 years ago.
Hello and welcome to Just Answer, when did you start working there?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I start on the 6th March 2012 and contract was for 12 months till 6th March 2013. Went on holidays overseas to Thailand to be with partner and family from 20th December 2012 to 21st January 2013. Started back to work on Wednesday 23rd January 2013 at 8.30am and notified at 10.30am that contract had been terminate last Monday 16th January 2013 due to no work been available. Why sign me for 12 month contract in first place and if they had not offered me a 12 month contract would have never left previous employment or joined Ausenco. Trust this answer your question

Expert:  Jenny replied 4 years ago.
As you have not been employed for 12 months you cannot claim unfair dismissal as the employment tribunal does not have jurisdiction to hear an unfair dismissal claim
Until you have been employed 12 months. You need to look at your contract to check there is in fact a notice clause. If there is not you may be able to claim lost earnings for the duration if the fixed term in breach if contract. If there is a notice clause them they are within their rights to exercise it. You need to check that notice was properly given, this would normally be to you rather than the agency. If it was not then you will be able to claim a weeks pay.

Unfortunately UK employment law does not further protect you. It is always a risk to change job and the fact you did this to start the current one does not strengthen your position.

Please remember to give positive feedback. I will be happy to answer your follow on questions.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hi Taratill


 


I mostly understand this reply but they ausenco and recruitment agency lie to me by offering a 12month contract just to get me to join them. In actual fact they never had work for 12 months and beyond as indicated. Why would I sign for 12 month contract in first place and leave previous employment to join Ausenco only to work for 8 to 9 months. If they only had work for 9 months then I should have been offered only a 6 month contract. They new that I would never agree to a 6 month contract. Also in contract it does state one weeks notice but this was never received by me until the 23rd Jan 2013. Why should I be charged with having to purchase airplane tickets to return back oversea because they failed to notify me and we could have just stayed oversea. What is the point in me signing any contract now or in the future that can be terminated at any time, I really want to know why I have to sign any contract.

Expert:  Jenny replied 4 years ago.
I sympathise with your situation but in the current economic climate it will be hard to prove that they did not intent 12 months and that there was not a downturn in work.

Any employer will require a signed contract to formalise the arrangement. You can refuse to sign but unfortunately that will probably render you unemployable.

Please remember to give positive feedback. I will be happy to snswer follow on questions.
Jenny and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hello Taratill


 


Its not that it was poor service, just not what I want to hear and when the legal firm for Ausenco is harass me and telling me they are going to sue me I wanted to get all the facts. The bottom line from what you have told me is Ausenco are totally in their rights to terminate at will, I will keep this in mind for any future contract. Execom is the only one who may be at fault due to them not notifying me on Monday 16th Jan 2013. I therfore may be able to claim one week employment from 23rd Jan 2013 when I found out termination had taken place. Still annoyed about having to purchase return airplane tickets back oversea that I should never of had to do and nothing in the legal system stops them from doing it again. Needs to be more communication and up to recruitment or employers to notify staff with reasonable notice periods. One week is definitely not good enough and if I want ed to leave have to give them 2 weeks notice, how is this fair in any legal way.


 


 


 


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Expert:  Jenny replied 4 years ago.
Hi I am sorry but the law does not always have to be fair. When presented with a contract you can try to
Negotiate better contract terms. It would be reasonable to ask for the same notice from them that you are required to give.