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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 been verbally suspended without pay as I cannot

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I have been verbally suspended without pay as I cannot apparently be trusted.
Never had any disciplinary before
Had week off sick due to a pulled shoulder when I returned I was sent home the first day as I was told my shift had been covered. The 2nd day I attended work I was originally told I would be doing other duties for the day which I agreed. I was then asked to step out the office. When asked to return to the office I was told I was suspended for up to 4 months as I could not be trusted and would recieve no pay. Was told not to come near the workplace or have any contact with any other colleagues.
Another member of staff was writing notes throughout the meeting. I asked if I could see this and was told it was none of my business.
Never received anything in writing this was 3 days ago and still nothing in writing.
What do I do?
I cannot afford to be without wages

Hello how long have you worked there for and does your contract state you can be suspended without pay?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I've worked there since September 2014.
My Contract states about suspension but only if suspended for abuse to people within the workplace which this does not relate to. It does not state whether suspension would be with or without pay.

Thank you. The first thing to note is that being placed on suspension is not an automatic assumption of guilt and does not amount to disciplinary action. It is there to be used as a precautionary measure whilst an employer investigates any allegations against the employee. Reasons for suspending could be in the case of gross misconduct, breakdown of relationship, risk to an employer's property, their clients or other employees, to preserve evidence or ensure it is not tampered with, avoid potential witnesses being pressured or intimidated, etc. Also there is no need for the contract to allow a suspension to take place, that can happen if the employer believes the circumstances warrant it.

During the period of suspension the employer should conduct a reasonable investigation into the allegations against the employee. If the investigation gathers enough evidence to justify the taking disciplinary action that could be the next step. In that case the employee has the right to be informed in advance of the allegations against them and be given the opportunity to prepare for the hearing.

On the other hand, if the investigation does not find enough evidence to justify a disciplinary, the employer should terminate the suspension immediately and allow the employee to return to work as normal.

The issue you have here is related to your length of service. If a suspension was unfair or unjustified then apart from an internal grievance, the only way to challenge that would be through resigning and making a constructive dismissal claim. However, you need at least 2 years’ service to be able to do that so in the circumstances you cannot challenge the suspension.

However, you will have rights in terms of not being paid for it. Any period of suspension must be on normal pay, unless the contract allows the employer to suspend you without pay. So you will be able to challenge the fact you are not being paid and argue that it amounts to unlawful deduction of wages and breach of contract.

This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the eights you have to take this further if you continue not being paid for the suspension period, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you

Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question and if you need me to discuss the next steps in more detail? In the meantime please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts from the top of the page. The question will not close and I can continue with my advice as discussed. Thank you

Hello, do you need any further assistance or are you happy with the above response? Look forward to hearing from you.

Ben Jones and other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your initial response with the information detailed above, much appreciated and sorry for my late reply.I have handed in my notice of which I would normally need to give 4 weeks notice so I have done.I'm guessing I would be within my rights to be paid this as i'm perfectly willing to work however not aloud will be a week tommorow since I was sent home and told i was suspended as I could not be trusted. I still have not recieved any formal notification or anything in writing detailing exactly why i'm suspended and i've called several times to head office and nobody returns my calls. Surely they cannot get away with this sort of protocol?My next pay day is Friday which should include last weeks wages if it has been deducted am i within my rights to go to a tribunal?

Thank you. You would not be able to challenge being driven out of the company but you can pursue them for any pay you have not received. If you were not paid for suspension of for the notice period then this potentially amounts to an unlawful deduction from wages, which is made illegal under the Employment Rights Act 1996.

Under law, an employer can only make deductions from, or withhold an employee’s wages in the following circumstances:

· If it is legally allowed (e.g. to deduct tax);

· If it is to recover an earlier overpayment of wages made by the employer;

· If their contract specifically allows for the deductions to be made; or

· If the employee has given their explicit written agreement for the deductions to be made.

If none of the above exemptions apply, the deductions will most likely be unlawful. In order to try and resolve this, the employer should be contacted in writing, advised that this is being treated as unlawful deduction of wages and ask them to pay back the money within 7 days. Advise them that if they fail to pay the money that is owed, legal proceedings could follow.

If the employer does not return the money as requested, the following options are available:

1. Employment Tribunal - the time limit to claim is only 3 months from the date the deductions were made. To make the claim, form ET1 needs to be completed and submitted - you can find it here:

2. County Court – this is an alternative way to claim and the advantage is that the time limit is a much longer 6 years and is usually used if you are out of time to claim in the Tribunal. The claim can be made online by going to:

Hopefully by warning the employer you are aware of your rights and are not going to hesitate taking further action they will be prompted to reconsider their position and work towards resolving this.