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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 49858
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Hello. i own a small shop (fish & chips) and @ 2 months ago

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Hello. i own a small shop (fish & chips) and @ 2 months ago I had to put people on shorter hours. At that time I had 3 adult employees and 4 students aged 16 17 and 2x 18. I am doing the shifts that I reduced from the others. The 16 & 17 year old have left. The reason for the reduced hours was because the business was not viable with the high wage levels. The question I need to ask is can I replace the students who have left or do I have to offer the hours to the adult staff. I need the original levels of staff to cover for holidays and other leave. The adults contract of employment states their hours are as per the rota no guarantee of hours are on the contract. Thank you.
Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. can you tell me how long your employees have been with you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Adult staff 10, 14 & 15 years . Students 2 & 3 years.
Ok thank you leave it with me I need to look up a few things and then get my advice ready.I will post back on here when done there is no need to wait and you will receive an email when I have responded.
Thanks for your patience. If all of your employees have a zero hours contract, basically a contract that does not guarantee them any hours and leaves the number of hours worked at your discretion, you are able to change the amount of hours they work as per the business needs.

Therefore, if the business needs require you to reduce their hours you may do so, as long as you follow the remainder of the contract, for example giving them specific notice to do so, if such is required.

If you have now lost a couple of staff and there are hours up for grabs so to speak, then you are not legally obliged to offer these hours to the existing members of staff and you may still decide to employ part time staff to take on these hours, leaving your existing employees’ hours as they are. However, that is only on the condition that they do not have contractually guaranteed hours. If you can also justify this decision through other reasons, for example that you actually need the extra staff and it is about having the extra number of employees rather than someone just doing the hours, then that would be even better.

I hope this has answered your query. Please take a second to leave a positive rating, or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
Hello, I see you have accessed and read my answer to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this? I just need to know whether to close the question or not? Thanks
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Hello Ben, just a final couple of points I need to clarify. I quote the statement of main terms of emoyment: HOURS OF WORK: Your normal hours of work are variable as per thestaff duty rota which will include a Friday or Saturday as diirected by the owner / manager, with appropriate breaks each shift. you may be required to work additional hours to the staff rota. End of quote. I need to replace staff who have left so I have enough staff to cover for holidays and sickness. The new member would be doing no more shifts than the staff who have left. I need to know if I can employ an adult to do the shifts the students have left or do I have to employ a student. Thank you Brian.
ok leave with me I need to go out for a couple of hours and will get back ASAP
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I have not rwceived your responce to my question of 30/4/14 @ 9.32 est
Hello Brian, apologies I did post my response yesterday but it appears that it did not register on the site, I will try again:

You certainly do not have to use a student to replace the students that have left. It does not matter whether the new employees are students, adults or pensioners.

If your original question has been answered I would be grateful if you could please quickly rate my answer - it only takes a second to do and is an important part of our process. I can still answer follow up questions afterwards if needed. Thank you
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