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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 50191
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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I have a PA that works on a part time 5hours/

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I have a PA that works for me on a part time 5hours/ week basis, providing support due to disability. She left without notice given. she sent me a text message overnight to inform that she would not be turning up for work in the morning as she had got another job that she was starting immediately. She knows how important her job is to help support my essential daily requirments. it seemed cruel the way she did this and I suffered distress as a result.
She is paid wages 4weekly and promptly. She was paid on that day and her text message followed overnight.
1) Is it reasonable to have expected her to give proper notice - 4 weeks, to allow recruitment of a replacement and smooth transition?
2) If so, can I deduct cost (that is 4 weeks wages) against her accrued holiday before making her final payment?
I have to rely on an agency support which is costly and also faced with cost of recruiting someone else, costly as well.
I eagerly await your reponse so I could sort this out quickly.
Hello, my name is***** am a qualified solicitor and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How long did she work there for?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.


Did she have a contractual notice period she was bound to give?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Yes, 4 weeks and others have done so in the past.

If there is a written contract in place and it contains a specific clause detailing the notice period an employee is supposed to give if they wanted to leave their employment, they will be contractually bound by it. Therefore, if the employee fails to honour this notice period then they will be acting in breach of contract. The employer then has the option of suing the employee to seek compensation for damages resulting from their breach. The employer has to show that actual losses have been incurred, such as having to get replacement at short notice and at extra cost. The issue is that unless you had a specific contractual clause allowing you to make deductions from her pay to cover a breach of contract scenario, you will be acting unlawfully. This is regardless of the fact she has already acted in breach of contract. Employees have very strong protection in terms of deductions being made from their pay and you cannot do that in the circumstances – you need a very specific contractual clause allowing you to do that. In the absence of such a clause the only way to do this is to make a separate claim against her in the small claims court to pursue the damages you seek. I hope this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating (3, 4 or 5 stars) as that is an important part of our process and recognises the time I have spent assisting you. If you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
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