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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 73949
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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After agreeing a job offer with a firm delivering milk, I

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After agreeing a job offer with a firm delivering milk, I completed 3 shifts with starts of 03.30, 00.30 and 02.30 I enjoyed no problem. I then had my annual health review when I explained my concer for an ongoing pain in my mid section back. I was told I needed an x ray as problem not improved for over 12 months, recommended not continuing with milk delivery. I am male an 66 years old. I’m having a problem with them receiving any kind of pay.
JA: Was this discussed with a manager or HR? Or with a lawyer?
Customer: Discussed with manager and told him my decision was purely on medical grounds and nothing to do with the work I was doing.
JA: What is your employment status? Are you an employee, freelancer, consultant or contractor? Do you belong to a union?
Customer: I am semi retired now no longer a union member
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: I was hoping everything would be amicable.

Hello, I’m Ben. It’s my pleasure to assist you today. I may also ask for some preliminary information to help me determine the legal position.

When did you work these shifts?

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
That’s ok, how do I stand don’t they have a legal obligation the wages I am owed
Customer: replied 19 days ago.
Thursday 13/ Monday17/Thurs20 May

OK I understand and thank you for providing this information. Please do not worry and leave it with me for now; I will get back to you with my answer as soon as I can which will be at some point today. The system will notify you when this happens. Please do not reply in the meantime as this may unnecessarily delay my response. Many thanks.

Many thanks for your patience, I am pleased to be able to continue assisting with your query now. If you completed the shifts as expected, you would be legally entitled to be paid for them, even if you are not going to proceed with the job.

Therefore, the employer’s actions will most likely amount to an unlawful deduction of wages, which is dealt with under the Employment Rights Act 1996.

Deductions of wages occur when an employer either makes actual deductions from an employee’s pay, or they stop their pay altogether. Under law, an employer can only do these 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 (no prior consent is needed, but at the same time they should discuss how this may affect the employee, considering any outgoings they have to meet)

- If the contract specifically allows for the deductions to be made

- If the employee has given their explicit written consent, such as in a separate written agreement

If none of the above exemptions apply, the deductions will most likely be treated as being unlawful. To take the matter further, the employer should be contacted in writing, advised that their actions are treated as unlawful deduction from wages and/or breach of contract and request that they repay the amount in question within 7 days. State that if they fail to do so, legal proceedings could follow to recover what has been unlawfully deducted.

If the employer does not return the money as requested, the following options are available to take things further:

1. Employment Tribunal - the time limit to claim is only 3 months from the date the last of the deductions were made. Before making the claim, ACAS must be engaged to negotiate with the employer and try to resolve this without the need for legal action. The next steps to initiate this procedure are to contact them, either online by filling in the following form (https://tell.acas.org.uk/find-a-solution-to-your-employment-dispute), or by phone on 0300(###) ###-####

2. County Court – this is an alternative way to claim and the advantage is that the time limit is a much longer 6 years. It is therefore a useful alternative if the 3-month deadline for the Employment Tribunal has been missed. Also, there is no need to negotiate before starting a claim and the claim can also be made online by going to: https://www.moneyclaim.gov.uk/web/mcol/welcome

Ideally, by warning the employer that their actions are unlawful and that legal action is considered, they will be prompted to try and resolve this and return the money with the need to take things further.

Hopefully, I have answered your query in a way that is simple and easy to understand. If anything remains unclear, I will be more than happy to clarify it for you. In the meantime, thank you once again for using our services.

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
Many thanks Ben, they have asked for a doctors letter so they can pay me. I do not have to do this do I as I have worked the shifts as expected.

No you do not, after all the doctors' note will not confirm that you have worked the shifts

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