Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.
How long has this been going on for? Please can you also tell me how long you have worked there for? Thank you
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Hi there, the issue with preventing the employer’s actions is that you cannot force them to do so, even if you are in the right and have rights to prevent that. If they are adamant on pursuing their agenda, they can continue with it, even if they are going to be discriminating against you in the process. All it means is that you may have a potential claim against them but you cannot actually force them to act in accordance to law instead.
If you are classified as being disabled you will have automatic protection against discrimination, which means that you must not be treated unfavourably because of your disability. In addition, the employer would have a duty to make reasonable adjustments if you are likely to be placed at a substantial disadvantage when compared to non-disabled employees.
What amounts to ‘reasonable adjustments’ can have a wide interpretation and often depends on the individual circumstances. Below are some examples:
Whilst the VE agreement would be the easiest option to put an end to this, do not just be railroaded into it. Ensure that you negotiate a suitable amount if you are to agree to it, together with references to help you find a new job in the future.
If you are unable to agree on a suitable VE, then you may have to consider a claim against them and there will be further opportunities to negotiate with tem before the claim proceeds.
This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the steps you must follow if you are to take this further and the negotiation options I mentioned, 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
Yes it does prevent you from making any claims against them in the future so that is why you need to be sure that what you are settling for is sufficient. If no agreement is possible whilst you are employed by hem and you have to leave and pursue this as a discrimination and/or constructive dismissal claim then you will have one more chance to negotiate.
That is because 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.
Ah yes if you are directly employed by GCHQ they are one of five exemptions to early conciliation. However, they are not exempt from a tribunal claim if you need to go that far.
If you need to pursue the union then that would be for breach of contract or negligence so you need a civil litigation lawyer ideally.
You can say you are unhappy with the lawyer but cannot force the union to use someone else. You will need some strong medical evidence that you did not have capacity to make decisions to be able to challenge the VE and then only a court can decide if that is sufficiently good a reason. So the note itself is unlikely to be enough – you would need a more detailed report and then if the employer refuses to accept it – only a court can decide whether it should make the VE invalid
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