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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 48194
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An year ago we started an app based company

Customer Question

Hi,
An year ago we started an app based company where I was only employee and was promised 2.5% of shares and this communication was through official email only. Initially discussed verbally with the founder and CEO of the company and later I emailed him the breif discussion to him. Although he did not respond to the email or deney it.
But in that email I mentioned about the hike of my invoice amount and I was paid as well.
Now Company has grown to over $200 million and the is company UK based. When I asked him about the share agreement, I understood that he is not willing to give me share that he promised, instead he offerred a tiny amount of shares and I didn't take it and kept quiet for few months. But since company is growin fast he doesn't want me to stay in the company as I could ask again and started behaving very unfair shouting at me infornt of other employees. This made me to resign from the company two days ago.(as he was always looking for it). All I have with the company is a contractual agreement confirming my daily rate (not permanent) with 1 month notice on either parites and NDA. Shares bit was in the email communication only. I was told to leave company on the same day I gave the resignation.
I got a letter from the company yesterday asking to sign. It conains I would not claim any thing with the company in the future and all the issues have been settled. I was shocked to see such letter as they didn't pay my current invoice for the days I worked and one month notice even.
So this is what I am looking for: Please advice me if I can proceed legally
1. Invocie amount for 11 days in this month (including the overtime I have worked)
2. 1 month notice pay as they dont want me to come office
3. Shares of 2.5% in the company
4. Damages for unfair treatment and causing mental stress
Now this person has become very rich and he might employ the best lawyer. What are my chances in winning the case
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Do you have written evidence of what was promised?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Well, as explained, it was verbally discussed and I wrote an email about the what was agreed. He nethier accept it or deney it. But in that email I mentioned that he agreed to increase my invoice amount from that month and when I raised for new amount he paid me.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your response. I will review the relevant information and laws and will get back to you as soon as I can. Please do not respond to this message as it will just push your question to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your patience. In terms of the things you can pursue him for I will deal with each one separately.
1. You can claim the invoice amount if it is for time already worked. The same applies to overtime you have worked as long as you would have normally been paid for it. So if you have undertaken the work you should get paid for it. The only thing is with overtime it is only payable if it is the norm to do so because there is no legal right to be paid for overtime
2. If you were ready and willing to work through your notice period and it was their decision not to allow you to work through it then they should pay you for its duration
3. This will be the most complex matter, especially due to the potential amount involved and the lack of proper written evidence. The initial discussion was made verbally and even though you sent an email to confirm that it does not mean it is formal evidence to back up your argument. A verbal agreement can be as legally binding as a written one but the difficulty is in proving what was discussed and agreed.
4. Unfortunately you cannot claim for damages for unfair treatment or distress caused.
This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the exact steps you need to follow to try and take this further, 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, leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
On point 3 it is just a plain email explaining as follows. This is just what I have. I need to know indetail of how possible for me to go with this evidence. I know it is not an easy one, but are emails not considered legal way of communication? Moreover he did not deny to this email so is it not implied in this case? It is like I say to someone you owe me £100 and if he keeps quiet knowing that I told him should he not obiliged?
######################################
From: ME
Date: Thursday, 5 March 2015 18:29
To: Accounts
Cc: CEO, some HR
Subject: Invoice for the Feb 2015Hi CEO,As we agreed last month, I am raising invoice to Karhoo Inc for £9000.Accounts, please find the attached invoice.Regards,Me
##########################################the above email was replied to the email below#################
From: me
Sent: 02 February 2015 14:53
To: HR
Cc: CEO
Subject: Salaries for IT TeamHi,All of the below resource are fulltime permanent employees:Myself– Invoice Per month: £7500. From next month it will be £9000 as agreed by CEO. Stock Options: 2.5%. From next month there will be a basic PAYE and rest of the amount is invoiced with VAT if Karhoo is VAT registered.IT resoruce1: Invoice per month: £5500. From next month to be agreed PAYE from CEO.IT resoruce 2: PAYE per month £1200 and from next month, it will be £28000 gross per annum.Regards,me
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello, email correspondence could indeed be used as evidence in a claim. The issue here is that it was not an exchange of emails, it was just you sending him an email and the fact that he did not respond does not make him automatically liable to honour its contents. For example I could send you an email, this evening claiming that you owe me £1000. You read the email and laugh at it as it is completely untrue, then just bin it. You do not reply to me, I never hear back from you. However, that does not mean that you are now liable to pay me that money. As such the email will not hols much strength on its own, what would matter is what was discussed verbally and this would come down to your and his evidence, what you both say happened and it would eventually be for a court to decide on who they believe is telling the truth. If your original question has been answered I would be grateful if you could please quickly rate my answer by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts at the top of the page - it only takes a second to do and is an important part of our process. I can still answer follow up questions afterwards if needed. Thank you
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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Is it possible to delete my earlier response from the forum?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Yes of course I ill ask that it is all locked for privacy
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Finally Ben, is it worth giving a try or it is waste of time. As I told you if I proceed they can hire the best lawfirm against this case as it will create a massive ripples in the company.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
I can't tell you whether to try or not as I cannot predict the outcome and the repercussions. But you have nothing to lose by at least following all the steps up to issuing a claim, such as reminders and formal letter before action. You could eve submit the claim - you can always withdraw it at any time. that may at least prompt him to issue you some for of offer to settle just so he can get you off his back
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Right, can you please advice the steps to follow. Also are you UK based? Is it possible to meet you in person or call?
He sent me a letter to sign which explains that I agree all the claims are settled with the company. Am I obiliged to sign it as a termination letter?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
The steps are outlined below: As legal action should always be seen as a last resort, there are certain actions that should be taken initially to try and resolve this matter informally and without having to involve the courts. It is recommended that the process follows these steps: 1. Reminder letter – if no reminders have been sent yet, one should be sent first to allow the debtor to voluntarily pay what is due. 2. Letter before action – if informal reminders have been sent but these have been ignored, the debtor must be sent a formal letter asking them to repay the debt, or at least make arrangements for its repayment, within a specified period of time. A reasonable period to demand a response by would be 10 days. They should be advised that if they fail to do contact you in order to resolve this matter, formal legal proceedings will be commenced to recover the debt. This letter serves as a ‘final warning’ and gives the other side the opportunity to resolve this matter without the need for legal action. 3. If they fail to pay or at least make contact to try and resolve this, formal legal proceedings can be initiated. A claim can be commenced online by going to www.moneyclaim.gov.uk. Once the claim form is completed it will be sent to the debtor and they will have a limited time to defend it. If they are aware legal proceedings have commenced it could also prompt them to reconsider their position and perhaps force them to contact you to try and resolve this. Whatever correspondence is sent, it is always advisable to keep copies and use recorded delivery so that there is proof of delivery and a paper trail. The court may need to refer to these if it gets that far. I am UK based but we do not meet clients in person. We do offer a phone call service but that is an additional charge so up to you. The agreement – you do not have to sign that, you will only do that if you are happy to accept the terms you have been offered. Until then, you cannot be forced to sign it
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks for your advice
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
you are welcome
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
(Posted by JustAnswer at customer's request) Hello. I would like to request the following Expert Service(s) from you: Live Phone Call. Let me know if you need more information, or send me the service offer(s) so we can proceed.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Ben, Ignore my request call.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
No problem, thanks
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Ben,Today the company that I worked came back and said that they will not give me the pay for the full notice period. Instead they said they will give two weeks notice pay and that too I need to sign the termination letter.I am attaching you my contract. Can you please suggest if I am eligible to claim the notice?Regards,
Niranjan
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Ben,Did you had a chance to go through my earlier request?Regards,
Niranjan
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
(Posted by JustAnswer at customer's request) Hello. I would like to request the following Expert Service(s) from you: Live Phone Call. Let me know if you need more information, or send me the service offer(s) so we can proceed.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Ben,I am waiting for your answer. I have to reply to my ex-employer
Regards,
niranjan