Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.
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Many thanks for your patience. The case law you have mentioned is indeed the relevant one in these circumstances and I do think you have a case to claim your extended notice period here. My comments on the situation are as follows:
· First of all the staff handbook says that the extension must be done in writing. You have to check whether the handbook officially forms part of your contract of employment because if it does not then it will not have contractually binding effect and its contents would just be policies, which the employer should follow, it is not a must in a contractual sense. Therefore, it would not necessarily be a contractual requirement for the extension to have been done in writing.
· Assuming that the extension was valid even if not in writing, the probation would have continued until 20 May. Your employer did not take any steps to extend it any further from date onwards and following the case law it would have been assumed that if no communication was made about an extension before the probation was officially over, that it would have been assumed to be passed
· In addition, you specifically asked if the probation was passed successfully, which the employer confirmed it had on 23 May
So overall I would say there is a reasonable chance that you are due the extended notice and you may wish to consider pursuing the employer further for it.
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Hi there, to check if the handbook is contractual you need to check the contract to see if there is anything in in that says the handbook forms part of it, or check the handbook itself to see if there is any mention of it having contractually binding effect.
Your assumption on the PB query is also correct – you may have been sent the invite on 20 May but by the time the meeting was held and the decision communicated, you were already outside of the extended PB so it should be a further argument that it had already been passed by then.
In terms of challenging this and claiming for what you are owed, the employer should be contacted in writing, advised that this is being treated as unlawful deduction of wages and ask them to pay back the money within 7 days. Advise them that if they fail to pay the money that is owed, legal proceedings could follow.
If the employer does not return the money as requested, the following options are available:
1. Employment Tribunal - the time limit to claim is only 3 months from the date the deductions were made. To make the claim, form ET1 needs to be completed and submitted - you can find it here: https://www.employmenttribunals.service.gov.uk/employment-tribunals
2. County Court – this is an alternative way to claim and the advantage is that the time limit is a much longer 6 years and is usually used if you are out of time to claim in the Tribunal. The claim can be made online by going to: www.moneyclaim.gov.uk.
Hopefully by warning the employer you are aware of your rights and are not going to hesitate taking further action they will be prompted to reconsider their position and work towards resolving this.