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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 50209
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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I have been sent a letter from my former employer saying I

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I have been sent a letter from my former employer saying I that I breached my contract by approaching one of their employees regarding a role in the company I now work for (the employee applied for and was offered a position within the company I now work for). They are claiming the cost to their business is over £10,000 and are threatening court action.
I did not speak to the employee in question until after he expressed interest in a position in the company and he applied for the position via an external 3rd party website. The employee in question was also actively seeking new employment and has e-mails proving he was applying for other positions.
The Non-Solicitation clause they have listed states:
“In Connection with the carrying on of any business (similar to or in competition with) the business of the provision of insurance”
I can upload the full document if required?
The company in question is an insurance company and I now work for a none profit housing association so not similar or in completion in any way!
I have been informed by someone still in the company that the HR manager stated a conciliatory response to the letter from me may help it go away but I am worried about implying guilt by being apologetic.
Could you please tell me the appropriate way to respond to this letter?

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

How long ago did you cease working for your former employer?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Ben, it was approx 4 months ago I stopped working for my former employer.

Hi there and thank you, ***** ***** it with me. I will review the relevant information and laws and will get back to you in a short while. There is no need to wait here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Also, please do not responded to this message as it will just push your questions to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you.

Many thanks for your patience. In these circumstances it is going to be difficult for the employer to actually issue a claim and get anything out of it, such as damages, compensation, or even an injunction. So what they are doing is likely to be acting out of principle and perhaps trying to prove a point. Personally, I am not confident that they would go as far as court because they would have to start spending a lot of money and time for something which is quite risky in the circumstances. So they may just be doing this to try and get you to apologise or issue some form of conciliatory letter as they have said. You do not have to do this, but if you think that this will put an end to the matter then you may wish to consider it. When you respond to them you can state that whilst you do not admit any liability, you are prepared to offer some sort of pre-agreed wording as long as you are happy with the contents. You could then send a brief statement, marked without prejudice, and which states that the contents of the letter are provided without any admission of liability on your part. If no satisfactory wording can be agreed then you may just wish to let them take this as far as they want, which as mentioned may not ever get to court due to the risks they may face. Of course they could just bury their heads in the sand and proceed with a claim anyway but it is for them to prove that what they are claiming is correct and that the damages are reasonable and from what you have said that would be rather difficult.

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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