Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today. Were you offered the job and did you accept it? Also what do you think they really meant by cultural issues?
So you never accepted the job offer?
Thank you. The first thing to note is that as you did not accept the offer, there would have been no contract formed and as such you cannot claim that they were guilty of breach of contract by giving the job to someone else. Your rights will be limited to any protection you get under equality laws, which deal with discrimination. For that, you must be able to show that you were treated detrimentally because of a protected characteristic, such as age, gender, race religion, sexual orientation, disability.
They mentioned cultural differences. This does not automatically man something related to your race or religion. However, if you believe that it was to do with any of these characteristics, then you can consider a claim for discrimination against them but you would need some evidence to back it up. Only in that case can you consider challenging their decision, otherwise with no formal contract in place they can refuse to employ you at any time.
This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the options you have if you think that there was discrimination at play, 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 is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you
Thank you. If you believe that the reasons for not offering you the job were due to a protected characteristic such as race, age, religion, etc then that is potential discrimination and a claim for injury to feelings and losses can be made in the employment tribunal within 3 months.
A new feature in the employment tribunal’s claims process is mandatory early conciliation with ACAS. This requires prospective claimants to notify ACAS and provide details of their intended claim and they would then try to negotiate between the claimant and respondent to seek out of court settlement in order to avoid having to take the claim to the tribunal. It is possible for the parties to refuse to engage in these negotiations, or that they are unsuccessful, in which case they would get permission to proceed with making the claim in the tribunal.
If negotiations are initiated and settlement is reached, then the claimant would agree not to proceed with the claim in return for the agreed financial settlement.
The conciliation procedure and the form to fill in can be found here:
In terms of the time limits within which a claim must be presented, the early conciliation process places a ‘stop’ on that and the time between notifying ACAS and them issuing permission to proceed with the claim would not count for the purposes of these time limits.