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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 49818
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I gave a personal witness statement on behalf of the local

Customer Question

I gave a personal witness statement on behalf of the local authority I work for, regarding a staff members accident in work. The staff member settled out of court in April 2014 but has now started to question my personal witness statement. I detailed that on occasions I found the staff member difficult to manage and I believed that the staff member stepped down from a seniors role partly due to competency issues (which he had informally spoken to me about). Can a grievance be raised from my personal witness statement when I only spoke the truth. This staff member has also declined to meet with me to discuss my comments. Many thanks
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is Ben and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

It is indeed possible to raise a grievance as a result of your witness statement, as after all these were comments made publically by you and even if they were the truth, the employee could still disagree with what was said, because after all this was still your personal opinion. Even when someone speaks the truth, it does not necessarily mean that it would be accepted by those to whom it refers and if they disagree with what was said they could raise a grievance. It would then be for the employer to investigate the allegations and decide on whether any further action needs to be taken

Ben Jones :

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? Thanks

Ben Jones :

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 : he was happy to settle out of Court in April, surely a grievance should have been raised at the time or just after. Does the length of time taken to query my comments count?
Customer : i appreciate my comments were on court papers but as it never actually went to court, (settled out of court), then my comments were publicised and the only people privy to my statement was myself, him and our respective solicitors. I feel that by him raising a grievance he is publicising it???
Ben Jones :

a grievance should indeed be raised without unreasonable delay unless other things have changed since and for example new reasons have come out to take this further now, rather than at the time. So the employer should consider the reasons for the delay and question these. It does not mean the grievance will be automatically rejected but it could affect the strength of the complaints. Whether the statement went to court or not would not really be relevant, these were still comments made by you which that person has seen so they can act upon them if necessary.

Hope this answers your follow up query?

Customer : Can a civil action be brought against me or does my HR department have to deal with it??
Ben Jones :

Civil action for what? What claim does this person have against you?

Customer : Because of my statement x
Ben Jones :

well no that does not really give them the right to take any civil action, this is something they can go through with a grievance but not take you to court for