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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 61083
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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I was employed on a permanent contract, subject to

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I was employed on a permanent contract, subject to satisfactory probation, 2 months ago. I have today been informed that the organisation is restructuring and there is no automatic role for me. My question is, surely they knew they were going to restructure at the time of hiring me, this involves over 100 staff, have I any case against them for hiring me when they were aware my role would be under threat very shortly.
Assistant: Have you discussed this with a manager or HR? Or with a lawyer?
Customer: HR sat in the meeting with the director and myself but wouldn't he drawn. I haven't had time to consult with a lawyer, this was only announced yesterday and my position clarified today
Assistant: What is your employment status? Are you an employee, freelancer, consultant or contractor? Do you belong to a union?
Customer: I am an employee, regrettably I have no union representation where I currently work - the company doesn't recognise any unions
Assistant: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: Only that they have automatically matched a large number of people in similar roles but none of our team. We have been told we can apply for any vacant roles- most of which I dont have the experience or qualifications for

Hello, I’m Ben, a UK lawyer and will be dealing with your case today. Firstly, I need to ask some initial questions to determine the legal position.

Customer: replied 5 days ago.
Thank you

The main issue is that if you have been continuously employed at you place of work for less than 2 years then your employment rights will unfortunately be somewhat limited. Most importantly, you will not be protected against unfair dismissal. This means that your employer can dismiss you for more or less any reason, and without following a fair procedure, as long as the decision is not based on a reason which makes a dismissal automatically unfair. These include:

{C}· Discrimination due to a protected characteristic (i.e. because of gender, race, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation, etc.)

{C}· Taking, or trying to take, leave for family reasons including pregnancy, maternity/paternity leave, parental leave, adoption leave or leave for dependants

 

However, if the dismissal had nothing to do with any of the above exceptions, you would not be able to challenge it. In that case your only protection would be if you were dismissed in breach of contract. That would usually happen if you were not paid any contractual notice period due to you (unless you were dismissed for gross misconduct, where no notice would be due). If you did not have a written contract in place you would be entitled to the minimum statutory notice period of 1 week. The employer would either have to allow you to work that notice period and pay you as normal, or they instead have to pay you in lieu of notice, where you are paid for the equivalent of the notice pay but your employment is terminated immediately.

 

So even if it may have been a likelihood that the job may not have proceeded any further, they could have still employed you and then dismissed you without any redress for you, based on the above rules.

 

I appreciate this may not be the answer you were hoping for but it is the legal position and I hope that it at least clarifies where you stand?

 

Customer: replied 5 days ago.
Thank you, I appreciate the clarification

All the best

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