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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I work in a bar and my boss has accused me of theft and

Customer Question

Hi
I work in a bar and my boss has accused me of theft and suspended me pending investigation. He accused me on the basis of looking through transactions and come to a decision that either i have been over charging customers or I must be stealing from the till.this is not true and no one has ever caught me stealing. However, the so called overcharging is actually customers leaving me a tip or buying me a dink. Eg on a card payment if the customers bill is £10 they tell me make it up to £15, so I charge them £15 and keep £5 as tip. We should be processing it through a tronc system but everyone does it the way I'm doing it so that we actually get the tip. May be not the correct way of processing the tip but the only way I can assure the customer that I will get it. This is not theft but at the same time I may still be in the wrong by not processing my tips through the tronc system which I will never get. My boss already has something against me and I have been thinking of filing a greavence against him many times along with other staff feeling the same way. My performance and relationship with everyone else is exceptional. Now that he has suspended me is it worth me fighting this even though he hates me? Can he prove me stealing when I'm not but he can put it across this way. How can i defend myself? Or should I just resign as I do not wish to work with him after these accusations. Many thanks for your time.
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 months ago.

How long have you worked there?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
3 years
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 months ago.

Hello, my name is ***** ***** my colleague has asked me to assist with your query as it is more my area of law.

From a legal perspective, being placed on suspension is not an automatic assumption of guilt and does not amount to disciplinary action. It is there to be used as a precautionary measure whilst an employer investigates any allegations against the employee. Reasons for suspending could be in the case of gross misconduct, breakdown of relationship, risk to an employer's property, their clients or other employees, to preserve evidence or ensure it is not tampered with, avoid potential witnesses being pressured or intimidated, etc.

During the period of suspension the employer should conduct a reasonable investigation into the allegations against the employee. If the investigation gathers enough evidence to justify the taking disciplinary action that could be the next step. In that case the employee has the right to be informed in advance of the allegations against them and be given the opportunity to prepare for the hearing.

On the other hand, if the investigation does not find enough evidence to justify a disciplinary, the employer should terminate the suspension immediately and allow the employee to return to work as normal.

The issue would be if there is apparent bias by those responsible for the suspension and any disciplinary. Whilst they may try and make you look guilty, if they are to dismiss for example, legally they would still need to follow specific criteria, otherwise a dismissal may be unfair.

I cannot tell you whether to resign or not as that is a personal decision for you but you are entirely free to raise a grievance over the treatment you have received and whilst you may be in the wrong for not following the set out system, there are mitigating factors which should mean this is not a dismissible offence but maybe one that you get a warning for.

This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the procedure the employer must follow to justify any formal action as being fair in law, 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

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 months ago.

Hello, my response should be visible on this page. Please let me know if this has answered your original question and if you need me to discuss the next steps in more detail? In the meantime please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts from the top of the page. The question will not close and I can continue with my advice as discussed. Thank you

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