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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 50165
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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My shift is to become a fixed shift doing 1600 - midnight +

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My shift is to become a fixed shift doing 1600 - midnight + any overtime required on salary, recently I have been doing mixed shifts and have made my employer aware that I would not be able to do this shift permanently, I have been given 12 weeks notice and thereafter will have to do this shift. I have currently had to put my house on the market as I fear I will not be able to sustain the mortgage.
Hello how long have you worked there for?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
11.5 years
Thank you and what are you actually employed to do, what does your contract say about the hours you are employed to work? If nothng, then how long have you been working under the current arrangement?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I am an operations supervisor, I am contracted to 40 hours per week Sunday to Friday, variable shifts, although actual hours/days may vary due to the nature of the job. Although there will be no set core hours of work I will be expected to work such hours as are necessary to meet my agreed work objectives or as set by my line manager. This may include evenings, weekends or customary holidays if necessary. All hours worked will be subject to compliance with the working time regulations.
The company may not seek to apply the full provisions of this contract at all times. This does not lessen my contractual commitment in any way irrespective of the length of time during which provisions are not applied.
I have been working under the current arrangement since January 2014.
Thanks for clarifying. Under contract you are entitled to 40 hours per week and that is what the employer is actually obliged to give you. You do not have any fixed hours of work though and they are able to vary your working time as they see fit and as the business needs dictate. So if you are placed on a fixed shift agreement of 8 hours per day, for 5 days they will still meet the obligations under the contract as they will be providing you with 40 hours per week. The fact that you have been doing mixed shifts for nearly two years does not mean you would automatically be entitled to retain this arrangement. You could try and argue that this has become your contractual arrangement through custom and practice but the employer could still try and change these.
There are a few ways in which an employer may try and make changes to an employee’s contract of employment. These are by:
• Receiving the employee’s express consent to the changes.
• Forcefully introducing the changes (called 'unilateral change of contract').
• Giving the employee notice to terminate their current contract and then offer them immediate re-engagement under a new contract that contains the new terms.
If the changes are introduced without the employee's consent, then the following options are available:
1. Start working on the new terms but making it clear in writing that you are working ‘under protest’. This means that you do not agree with the changes but feel forced to do so. In the meantime you should try and resolve the issue either by informal discussions or by raising a formal grievance.
2. If the changes fundamentally impact the contract, for example changes to pay, duties, place of work, etc., you may wish to consider resigning and claiming constructive dismissal. The resignation must be done without unreasonable delay so as not to give the impression that the changes had been accepted. The claim must be submitted in an employment tribunal within 3 months of resigning and is subject to you having at least 2 years' continuous service. You would then seek compensation for loss of earnings resulting from the employer's actions.
3. If the employment is terminated and the employer offers re-engagement on the new terms that could potentially amount to unfair dismissal. However, the employer can try and justify the dismissal and the changes if they had a sound business reason for doing so. This could be pressing business needs requiring drastic changes for the company to survive. If no such reason exists, you can make a claim for unfair dismissal in an employment tribunal. The same time limit of 3 months to claim and the requirement to have 2 years' continuous would apply.
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Hello, I see you have read my response 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? If your query has been dealt with please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts from the top of the page. If you need further help please get back to me on here and I will assist as best as I can. Thank you.
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