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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 49852
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I am acting in "a temporary development role" as as Interim

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I am acting in "a temporary development role" as as Interim for more than 2 years (since February 2014) and have been paid an uplift on my salary for doing this. This is not equivalent to the salary of the Senior and specialist public service role. I was previously deputy to this post (still my substantive role) and this has not been filled with an equivalent but by some temporary support arrangements (currently vacant) which I initially agreed to as the plan was that this was a short term arrangement. The post was advertised in December 2015 but due to small applicant pool they decided to readvertise - the organisation has an ambition to select from 3 suitable candidates. They have know slightly amended job description and readvertised. There was also a suggestion they might head hunt. I applied for post when last advertised and I will also do so now.
My questions are: Is the type of arrangement I have now fair and within law and if not how should I approach.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today. What are your specific concerns about this arrangement and what are you hoping to achieve?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
To know what my position is in law and to be able to discuss with HR as a learning point and not necessarily do anything with that.
Personally I suppose it's whether after more than a certain period you must automatically be offered a post at grade. When I worked in NHS under HR rules this was 18 months.
Whether I could be entitled to compensation for appropriate salary for role.
Whether this length of time without appropriate support is more setting up to fail, and has now turned into a cost saving exercise at my expense rather than a development opportunity for me as it was sold. I'm not whinging here- I've really achieved a lot and they know it and I can sell that but its despite of the arrangement - rather than because of it in some cases
I have no problem with going through selective process - I always expected to, so am not trying to wriggle out of that! External colleagues have suggested that the process will now be rigged as employer will be legally bound to offer me position but I don't feel that is true.

There is nothing in law that says you must automatically be offered a role at grade once you have been in it a certain length of time. There is a thing called ‘custom and practice’ which could result in an implied change to your contract to reflect a practice which has been consistently applied over a period of time, but this is determined on a case by case basis and will depend on the arrangements between the parties. So if it is still made clear that this is not a permanent move but one which may be subject to change still, it could be that the implied change to your terms to reflect this post is delayed. Also just because you are acting up in a role does not mean that you are entitled to get paid the amount that someone directly recruited in that position would receive. Unless there is a general contractual right to receive a certain amount for working a specific rile, the employer is free to pay whatever they want if it is agreed with the employee.

So you do not get automatic rights to be placed in this role just because you have done it for the last 2 years. If the arrangement was always that this was to be a temporary placement, the employer can keep it that way and eventually decide who would be most suitable to fill that role. You could certainly be considered for it but it does not guarantee that you would get it.

You are of course free to continue negotiating with the employer over this but if you do not get the role or are not compensated for doing the role, then your rights are somewhat limited in pursuing this further.

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

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
That is fine and answers my question fully. I am not unduly unhappy with the situation, it was always temporary -and always expected to go through a competitive selective process its just gone on much longer than anyone expected. I wasn't sure if the circumstances with my previous employer was HR policy or employment law and really wanted clarification.

you are welcome. If your original question has been answered I would be grateful if you could please quickly rate my answer by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts at the top of the page - it only takes a second to do and is an important part of our process. I can still answer follow up questions afterwards if needed. Thank you

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