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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 46743
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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My employer issued a permanent contract which I signed and

Resolved Question:

My employer issued a permanent contract which I signed and accepted 17 months ago which states 'Pension Scheme / Medical Benefits' (Named Firm - will agree to provide you access to relevant pension schemes and medical plans once the firm is legally required by law. We intend to be at the required level in six months.
Regularly chased by the UK MD to the US parent company for a decision and advised to UK staff at various periods that it is expected imminently, after 17 months still no benefits are in place.
Am I entitled to request and receive payment for the expected after six months premiums until the scheme is put in place?
Your guidance is appreciated.
Kind regards
John Cobbold
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello how long have you worked there for?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
For Ben Jones .... 17 months Oct 2014 to 7 March 2016
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello, sorry I was offline by the time you had replied. Do you know when the company was required to enrol you into a pension scheme by law. This would usually depend on the number of its employees in the PAYE scheme or its PAYE reference – you can refer to the tables here to see when this date would be (scroll down once you follow the link): http://www.nowpensions.com/auto-enrolment-staging-dates/
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
For Ben Jones... My query is and always has been about implied expectation. Due expected within six months, and seventeen months later still no benefits despite UK MD advising UK staff that USA HR advised over a number of email exchanges that expected dates for implementation have come and gone. Meetings in Chicago on the same subject in July 2015 left the impression that benefits would be paid soonest. When the Jan 2016 expected latest implementation date came and went US Legal agreed that a package of individual Life Cover and Medical Insurance is agreed but that the firm had now been classed as a stand alone business and not entitled to the expected group scheme as enjoyed in the US. This then classes me in the 20170201 auto enrollment category according to the calculator you provided to check. I signed my contract and accepted my position on the basis that the expected 6 months benefits implementation would be paid as at age 54 when joining this is a significant requirement. Then on a regular basis the managed expectation was a series of conversations and emails from the UK MD in discussion with USA HR with a series of unfulfilled start dates. Where do I stand on the expected and ongoing expected situation with regard to what I could have expected to have received? And can I claim premiums that I could have expected since six months of joining the company. For your understanding the company promote themselves (as indoctrined in the annual company wide conference in Chicago each year - as one Crowe - the emphasis that we are one family regardless of location (34,000 staff) and US staff get pension and medical paid as displayed on the daily global intranet).
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hi there, the issue here is that this was, as you put it, an implied expectation. It is not a guarantee, even if implied. So to try and argue that legally they must have implemented these when they said they were hoping to do is going to be difficult. An expectation to do something is just that, it does not translate into a guarantee. So whilst it would have been entirely appropriate and within your right to raise the matter internally, such as through a grievance, to challenge it legally will be difficult because there was never confirmation or guarantee that these benefits would be implemented at a specific time. From what you were told this appears to have always been an expectation, an ideal outcome, which carried no actual guarantee with it. As such trying to enforce that through the courts, which is the only place you may do so no, will be a big challenge. There is of course nothing stopping you from doing so and you may even threaten the employer with legal action in the hope they compensate you rather than having to defend a claim.This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the steps you can take 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, there I no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 46743
Experience: Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
Ben Jones and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Thank you. Whenever a dispute arises over money owed by one party to another, the debtor can be pursued through the civil courts for recovery of the debt. 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.

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