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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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If my employer gave me a provisional notice of a change pursuant

Resolved Question:

if my employer gave me a provisional notice of a change pursuant to section 4 of the Employment Rights act 1996 two months ago, pending the outcome of an appeals process. Does the provisional or the formal notice (sent to me yesterday) constitute the start of the 30 days notice period?
Does my employer have to have a policy setting out who is authorised to issue notices that are pursuant to the above act?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. What was the change they gave you notice for?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

a change to my location

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
How long have you worked there for?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

13 years

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
What was the exact wording of the notice given to you as that could influence it's start date?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

my role stays the same but the number of us performing the role had to be reduced. we were all required to apply for our own jobs. I was successful but did not get the location I requested and have been given my second choice. this was advised to me in a letter, which stated that the offer was provisional pending the outcome of an appeals process. this was two months ago. on 16/6/15 I was sent a formal notice of the change to my location pursuant to section 3 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 and provides me with only 15 days notice. I queried this and have been told that the provisional notice constitutes the start of the notice period. Is this correct?

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
The way this was worded is somewhat ambiguous and I am afraid the law does not specifically deal with such issues and provide a definitive answer. The notice you were issued with could operate in one of two ways:
• It was provisional pending an appeal, which means that it started on the day it was issued and would only be completed once the appeal had been finalised. So if the appeal was still ongoing at the time the 30 days were up, the notice would not complete and it will be postponed until the appeal is finalised. As soon as the appeal finishes then the remainder of the notice would continue or if it has already expired it will take effect immediately
• It was provisional pending the appeal meaning it was placed on hold until the appeal had completed but it had not started to run until that happened. So only once the appeal has been finalised would the 30 days start to run.
The employer believes scenario 1 applies, you believe it is scenario 2. There is in fact no definitive right or wrong answer unless the way the notice operates was specifically described which does not appear to be the case. So either of you could be right and to be honest only a court or tribunal can decide who that would be. In the meantime it is for you and the employer to try to agree on something, you could consider advising them you could take this to court to put a bit of pressure on them.
As to the policy setting out who is authorised to issue such notices that is certainly not a legal requirement so the absence of such a policy would not make their actions unlawful in any way. It may be helpful to have such a policy in place but it is not a legal requirement.
I hope this has answered your query. Please take a second to leave a positive rating, or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
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