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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 8445
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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My wife has worked for a rest home for 15 has

Customer Question

my wife has worked for a rest home for 15 has recently been sold...she has received letters from the former owner that nothing would change (part of sale agreement) and yet 2 weeks in the new owner is saying that all shifts are going to wifes shifts are being changed next week none of which she can do (the new owner is aware)...he is saying if you are not going to be flexable then "goodbye"..surely this is not right...surely contracts can not be changethout any agreement...i am writing as my wife rang me crying and saying she wants to walk out but i have told her that he will win and to complete her shift...please help
Submitted: 22 days ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  F E Smith replied 22 days ago.

You are absolutely correct, the new employer cannot change anything within the first 12 months. Even then, he cannot unreasonably change things without the employee’s consent. The applicable legislation is the Transfer of Undertakings Protection for Employment Act (TUPE) which, in a nutshell states that if a business is sold, the new owner has to carry on as before.

If she does walk out because he is making it intolerable for her to work there, she has a claim to make in the employment tribunal for constructive dismissal. Constructive dismissal arises when an employer makes it so difficult for an employee to continue to work for them that the employee feels that they have no alternative but to leave.

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Customer: replied 22 days ago.
thank you ...the new owner is demanding "flexability" but it seems he is disregarding everything that the employees have done for the rest home and care of all the residents
Expert:  F E Smith replied 22 days ago.

He can demand all he likes but if there was no flexibility before, he is not unreasonably allowed to demand it now. If he is asking your wife to do shifts which she simply cannot do because of other commitments, then that is unreasonable.

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