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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 50177
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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Hi, I would like to ask for a bit of advice if possible.

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I would like to ask for a bit of advice if possible. On the 10 of march 2014 I started working at 9:50am, assistant manager informed me that I was wanted by the general manager in 15 minutes. When I went to meet him he gave me a letter and order me to read it. I read it: "Termination of employment". I ask what have I done and I've been ordered "to read the letter, everything is in there". I've started to read again but, I couldn't find anything true in the letter. I asked:"Why? What have I done to you? Do you hate me?! Why?" I received no answer but: "You have 5 minutes to leave the kitchen!" I worked for them until monday since april 2012, I applied for sous chef position on the same day when the head chef did never come to work. So, there I found myself in acting head chef position before I even knew it. I managed to find someone to help but, he wanted to be head chef. I did not mind, all I wanted was to make that kitchen work with no complains. From may 2012 I was the sous chef and when the head chef left in february 2013 the head chef position was offered to me... all I heard in this period and up to monday 10'03'14, from the owners(2), general managers (2),customers and colleagues my work and meals was:" 100% very good, delicious, superb, fantastic,..." never had a warning, manager says in the letter that they made me aware ....I'm still in shock! Can you help?

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. What was our exact start date in this employment?

I an just going offline as I have an early start unfortunately but will get back to you first thing in the morning if that is ok thanks



Ben Jones and other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Many thanks for your patience. If you have been continuously employed at your place of work for less than 2 years then your employment rights will unfortunately be somewhat limited. Most importantly, you will not be protected against unfair dismissal. This means that your employer can dismiss you for more or less any reason, and without following a fair procedure, as long as their decision is not based on discriminatory grounds (i.e. because of gender, race, religion, age, a disability, sexual orientation, etc.) or because you were trying to assert any of your statutory rights (e.g. requesting maternity/paternity leave, etc.).

If the dismissal had nothing to do with any of the above exceptions then you would not be able to challenge it and your only protection would be if you were not paid your contractual notice period, because unless you were dismissed for gross misconduct, you would be entitled to receive your contractual notice period. If you did not have a written contract in place you would be entitled to the minimum statutory notice period of 1 week. Your employer would either have to allow you to work that notice period and pay you as normal, or they will have to pay you in lieu of notice.

If you were not paid your notice period when you were due one, that would amount to wrongful dismissal (which is different to unfair dismissal) and you could make a claim in an employment tribunal to recover the pay for the notice period that you should have been given. There is a 3-month time limit from the date of dismissal to submit the claim.

However, apart from pursuing the employer for the notice period you cannot challenge the dismissal itself unfortunately, at least not unless you can show it was for a discriminatory reason as mentioned above.

I'm sorry if this is not necessarily the answer you wanted to hear but I hope you understand I have a duty to be honest and explain the law as it actually stands and sometimes this does unfortunately mean delivering bad news. Please let me know if you need me to clarify anything.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you.

Yo are welcome, all the best