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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 74354
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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My current employer have not furloughed me nor have they

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My current employer have not furloughed me nor have they dismissed me. They have made no effort to contact me and I do not have any contact details for the managers
JA: Have you discussed the termination with a manager or HR? Or with a lawyer?
Customer: I haven't been dismissed
JA: What is your employment status? Are you an employee, freelancer, consultant or contractor? Do you belong to a union?
Customer: Employee and no
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: No

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

How long have you worked for this employer? and what is your specific question in relation to this please?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No problem
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Since January this year, and I am just wondering whether my employer is allowed to refuse to furlough me but also not dismiss me at the same time, I am currently unable to work from home as my workplace is a theatre

Thank you. Leave it with me for now, although please note it is extremely busy at present due to the ongoing situation so there may be a delay in replying, but I will get back to you at some point today. Please do not reply in the meantime. Many thanks

Many thanks for your patience. The first and most important thing to bear in mind is that furlough is not a given and there is never a ‘right to be furloughed’ It is simply an option open to employers to use as they see fit and the Government has entrusted them fully to decide as and when the scheme needs to be applied. Therefore, even if you meet all the criteria and tick every box to be eligible for furlough, the employer can still decide not to do so and you cannot challenge that decision (unless it was made on discriminatory grounds such as because of your gender, age, race, religion, etc).

If the employer refuses to furlough you then they are still obliged to honour their contractual obligations towards you.

In terms of dismissal, as 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:

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

· 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.

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 1 year ago.
Thank you

All the best

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