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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 50202
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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I am an employer/ owner of 2 children's day nurseries. An employee

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I am an employer/ owner of 2 children's day nurseries. An employee gave me 4 weeks notice to terminate her employment on Thursday, 24th March because she had been offered a job with a local day nursery. I accepted her notice and explained that I didn't want her meeting and greeting the parents of our nursery children and I didn't want them to be told that she was leaving and where she was going. I also told the rest of the staff the same. The employee, after phoning her new employer said that she was been bullied and that she was starting her new job straight away, on Tuesday 29th March, she then took off her work pinny, got her certificates, bag and coat and walked out. She also said that she was seeking advice about me. Was I in the wrong? Do I suspend her for walking off site and go through the disciplinary route? or do I give her her P45?
Hello how long has she worked there for?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi, she started work on 16th February 2015. Then finished on 31st July 2015 to have a baby. She then started again on 1st February 2016. She wasn't eligible to claim maternity allowance from me as she hadn't been employed long enough.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I paid her holiday pay for all of 2015, even though she wasn't accruing holidays when she was absent.
Apologies for not getting back to you sooner, I experienced some temporary connection issues and could not get back on the site until now. All appears to be resolved now so I can continue dealing with your query. This is not really bullying. The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) defines bullying as “offensive, intimidating, malicious or insulting behaviour, an abuse or misuse of power through means that undermine, humiliate, denigrate or injure the recipient.” Whatever form it takes, it is unwarranted and unwelcome to the individual subjected to it. What you asked her to do is not bullying, it can be a reasonable request of a departing employee. Also, to claim bullying a person can only do so by making a claim for unfair or constructive dismissal, both of which require at least 2 years’ service. So she cannot legally make a claim for bullying anyway. She may be seeking advice but she cannot take this any further. There is no point wasting your time going through a disciplinary with her – she is clearly not coming back so you should simply write to her to state that you are treating her actions as a resignation with immediate effect, that as she is not there to work through the rest of her notice period you will not pay her for it, and that she will be paid for the time worked until she walked out. Pay her what she is due and issue her P45 and leave it at that. 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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Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you once again for your help. 5* service.
Many thanks, ***** ***** best