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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
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Hi, if your boss calls you in his office and your immediate

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Hi, if your boss calls you in his office and your immediate manager and gives you a long lecture regarding the concerns about the work and then issues you a verbal warning. Then months you find out it was not put in your work file. Is that counted as a valid warning. Nothing was given to me in writing to confirm the warning or how long it would be on my records. Yet, it seems there is nothing on my personal file. How do I stand , I feel that that the way it was handled was not professional nor 'correct'. I feel very much that the 'talk' and the verbal warning was a way to 'scare' / intimidate me and in effect I have worried about my job ever since, so much so I find it hard to sleep and looking at trying to down size my home and find a property that would be mortgage free as I worry about losing my job and thereby losing my home. How would I stand if there is nothing on my file regarding the verbal warning
Ben Jones : Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How long have you worked there for?

Hi 18 years , can't remember exactly.


I am actually speaking to one of the directors this morning to confirm if they do actually have it on my records. If its not then it concerns me that I was treated in that matter and told I had a verbal warning. I have been with the company for many years a the reason that lead upto my getting a verbal warning did not appear to be taking into consideration despite them being aware of them and I had discussed my concerns with them and stated what actions I was taking to resolve them. (this was a medical problem and the knock on effect of an operation, which they were fully aware of).

Ben Jones :

Good morning, whilst I understand your concerns, the employer has not actually done anything wrong here. A verbal warning is an unofficial warning, which can be issued at any time. It is not treated in the same way as a written or final warning – these would go on your file and be treated in a formal manner, whereas a verbal warning is just issued on the spot and it would usually be the end of the matter. It is an informal warning to advise you there are certain concerns and give you the opportunity to deal with them, in the hope of avoiding formal action in the future. If things did not improve and the employer still believed that there are issues which need formal attention, they could have then proceeded to a formal disciplinary or performance management and then you could have been issued with a formal written warning, which would have been dealt with in a formal manner and recorded on your file.

It is still possible for employers to include verbal warnings in your personnel file but that is not a legal requirement and it is left at their discretion. However, if that was the case then it would have had to be treated as a formal warning and you should have been taken through a formal disciplinary procedure, such as being given details of the allegations in advance, attended a formal disciplinary, allowed to be accompanied, formally defend yourself and also given the option to appeal the outcome. However, if the employer has decided not to include the warning on your file, it would not be treated as a formal warning and none of these requirements would apply – it would instead just be treated as an informal warning.

Ben Jones :

Hope this clarifies your position? If you could please let me know that would be great, thank you


Hi thank you for clearing that up. So I have been worrying myself sick over this, especially I feel very much like he is looking for things with me, a t first I thought I was paranoid but a recent event proved this not to be the case . Thank you again for your help .

Ben Jones :

you are most welcome, all the best

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