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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 45351
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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i am a care assistant and wrote my client list for the day

Resolved Question:

i am a care assistant and wrote my client list for the day with my predicted times of arrival on it for my benefit we have to fill out a duplicate book with correct times( done at the end of the shift) and supply that with our time sheet at the end of the month. i work in a complex for elderly people and it has a pull cord system of which can be pulled for emergencies so my times may change throughout the day and my paper would be updated as needed. my new supervisor can in to see me and saw my paper with predicted times on and with in two minuets had rang the office for the manager to come down and accused me and two colleagues of fraud saying we would be sacked and our jobs were on the line we are trying to get money falsely by putting in false times and it is fraud. i have made a statement to the manager who now tells me this may be a disciplinary for me, i am gobsmacked as i have never met this supervisor or manager before and they have just accused me of fraud i have worked for the company for about 15years
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.

Ben Jones : Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Have you been officially told you are definitely facing a disciplinary?
Customer:

no not yet it has to go to higher management to see what they think although my freind said the manager gave her her peice of paper back with her times on at the end of the day and i asked for mine and she said she will get it back to me

Ben Jones :

So you had not yet had the chance to put any times in the official book that day?

Customer:

no

Ben Jones :

There is obviously no actual fraud on your part in this situation and this has only come about due to another employee’s suspicion that you were going to just use the planned times to enter them in the final book and claim for them, rather than the actual times you have worked.


 


At this stage you are still innocent until proven guilty and before the employer can take any action against you they have a duty to conduct a reasonable investigation and also take you through a proper and fair disciplinary procedure., So there is still quite a lot to go before any decision can be fairly taken against you.


 


As far as the law on the matter stands, misconduct (such as the allegations here) is a common reason for taking disciplinary action against an employee. It could be due either to a single serious act of misconduct or a series of less serious acts over a period of time.


 


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



  • Conducts a reasonable investigation;

  • Follows a fair disciplinary procedure; and

  • Shows they had reasonable grounds to believe the employee was guilty.


 


In addition, the employer is expected to follow the ACAS Code of Practice on disciplinary and grievance procedures. Altogether, it means that a disciplinary procedure should be conducted as follows:


 


1. Investigation - a reasonable investigation is needed. What is reasonable depends entirely on the circumstances and especially the nature and seriousness of the allegations. The more serious these are, the more detailed the investigation needs to be.


 


2. Disciplinary hearing - if the investigation provides sufficient evidence of misconduct, the employee may be invited to attend a formal disciplinary hearing. They must be given prior notice of the hearing, including details of the allegations, allowing them time to prepare. They have the legal right to be accompanied at the hearing but only by a trade union representative or a colleague.


 


3. Decision and penalty - following the disciplinary, if the employer holds a genuine belief that the employee was guilty, then they can go ahead and formally sanction them. When deciding on the appropriate penalty, the employer should consider the nature and seriousness of the offence and the employee's disciplinary record. Unless the offence was one of gross misconduct, ACAS recommends that the employee should be issued with a written warning.


 


If there are any doubts about any of the above and there is belief or evidence that the employer has not satisfied these requirements, an appeal can be submitted to the employer immediately after the disciplinary outcome. If the disciplinary results in dismissal then a claim for unfair dismissal can be made in the employment tribunal. There are two requirements to claim: the employee must have at least 2 years' continuous service with the employer and the claim must be made within 3 months of the date of dismissal.

Customer:

thank you

Ben Jones :

you are welcome

Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 45351
Experience: Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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