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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 49801
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I am employed as a casual Registration Officer by my County

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I am employed as a casual Registration Officer by my County Council. A manager in the Registration office has emailed us all ( around 70 of us) stating that our time sheets should have been received by the last day of November in order for us to be paid for Nov. work at the end of Dec. This is contrary to usual practice which requires us to submit time sheets in the first few days of the new month ( cut off dates varying according to when the last day of the month falls, but usually around the 3rd to the 5th). My employers failed to inform us of this requirement for the month of December, and although I sent mine in on the 2nd, I am not going to be paid at the end of Dec. I have canvassed some colleagues and it will affect pretty much all of us. The email is defensive and patronising, stating that as work is scarcer in Dec. the amounts of wages are smaller and therefore it doesn't matter !
What are our rights please?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
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Hello, my name is***** am a solicitor on this site and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. can you tell me the date the email was sent to the employes about the time sheets being submitted on the last day off the month and do you know what the contractual rights are for submitting your timesheets please.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Yesterday, 14th Dec.
Thank you for your response. I will review the relevant information and will get back to you as soon as possible. Please do not respond to this message as it will just push your question to the back of the queue and you may experience delays.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
To my knowledge we have never been given any contractual rights as far as time sheet submit dates, or anything else for that matter. We are under this tricky thing called "nil hours contract" they are not obliged to offer us work and we in turn are not obligated to accept it. This is because the nature of the the work is spasmodic and seasonal.
ok thank you for that information I will get back to you ASAP with my advice on how to proceed with this. regardsBen
Many thanks for your patience. Your rights in this situation will not really be governed by any specific laws as it is really a purely contractual matter. This means that they way you are paid and the dates that this happens on would be dictated by contract. If you did not have a contract which dealt with this specific aspect then you can only really rely on what the usual practice in such situations would have been. So if you were always following a specific practice and they just changed it this month, you could argue that the usual procedure was something that had become an implied contractual term through custom and practice. Therefore the changes would have amounted to a change to those implied contractual terms. The way the law works in this respect is as follows. There is a principle in employment law where terms may become implied into an employment contract by ‘custom and practice’. This makes them contractually binding even if they are not written down anywhere. This area of law is rather complex and it is usually only down to the courts to establish with certainty if something had become an implied term. Nevertheless, it does not prevent employees from directly raising this argument with their employers. The basic requirement for implying terms is the presumed intention of the parties, in other words - did the employer and employee intend for the terms in question to be treated as contractual. In general, a practice would need to have been clearly communicated and consistently applied for a substantial period of time before it can be considered an implied contractual term. Therefore, something that is uncertain, not communicated properly, not been applied consistently or has just been around for a few months is unlikely to qualify.Case law has suggested that the following are important factors when considering whether a term has become implied in a contract:• On how many occasions, and over how long a period, the terms in question have been applied - the more times they have been applied and the longer the period over which this has occurred, the stronger the argument they had become implied into the contract• Whether the terms are always the same - large differences will make the argument they had become implied weaker• The extent to which the terms are publicised generally - there must be widespread knowledge and understanding amongst the workforce that such terms were being appliedYou may tell the employer that you believe the term or practice you are relying on has been implied into the contract through 'custom and practice' and see what they say. They could of course deny that and refuse to discuss the matter and if that is the case then you can only realistically challenge this by taking your case to an employment tribunal, although you are free to raise a grievance with the employer first to try and deal with this internally. 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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