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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 50202
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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A colleague and I were accused of racial discrimination by

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A colleague and I were accused of racial discrimination by another colleague and were totally exonerated by an internal investigation. He has now gone to an industrial tribunal citing myself, my colleague and the organisation I work for separately. As a result my organisation has suddenly said they are only insured for action against them not individuals. Re claim for racial dicrimination by work colleague where internal enquiry totally exonerated me.My firm said as there were 3 named defendants they could only cover their fees and I could claim on my contents insurance policy but my insurers tell me I am not covered. I have worked for the organisation for 18 years and feel very let down and frightened. In all that time I have only ever had two days off sick. The thought of funding the legal fees is badly effecting my health. I cannot sleep or concentrate, my hands have started shaking and I want to cry all the time.I am due to retire soon and do not wish to cash in my pension for legal fees I don't believe I am liable for. Can you offer any advice? Do I have rights? You said you neededmore informat ion but did not say what. I always thought CAB offered free advice.
Ben Jones : Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. At what stage of the process is the claim?
Customer: We have been served with papers which I have to collect from head office on Monday. I have been told there is an initial meeting on 20th January
Ben Jones :

In a discrimination claim the claimant can list as respondents both the employer and any individuals who they believe are responsible for the alleged discriminatory behaviour. Each respondent is treated separately and will have several liability to the others, meaning that a tribunal can find all respondents guilty and apportion certain liability to them, or just find one or part of the respondents guilty. The issue is that as you are personally named in the claim you will have personal responsibility to defend this. Your employer has no liability to offer you any help or assistance with defending the claim, even if what happened was done whilst you worked for them Many employers will help employees in such situations out of loyalty or because they feel that morally they should but that is left at their own discretion and legally you cannot force them to do so.

Therefore, as it stands you will have to defend these allegations personally. You do not actually have to get a lawyer to represent you and can do this personally, simply by providing the necessary evidence, so you can save on legal fees if needed.

The CAB can assist for free but only to a degree and they can’t come in to represent you in tribunal, but they can assist on the side in terms of procedural requirements, etc. Still, their help will be limited.

Customer: My daughter says I should use the money we have put aside for her wedding next summer. I don't think it is right for her to suffer. Would it be possible to offer a sum of money without admitting guilt if I were to be removed from the list of respondents?
Ben Jones : You only need to spend the money now if you want formal legal representation and that is not automatically necessary. But you are also free to offer a settlement sum, without admitting guilt, to be removed as a respondent but it is up to the claimant to decide if they are willing to accept it
Customer: Is there any other advice you can offer? When I tried clicking on the relevant satisfaction button bellow I get up a pop up message which say you have not finished answering.
Customer: What is a reasonable amount?
Ben Jones :

A reasonable amount can have a very wide interpretation based on the nature of the claim, the strength of the claimant's case, the seriousness of the alleged offences, what you are prepared to offer and also what they are prepared to accept. You could wait until they submit a schedule of loss detailing the value of their claim to get an idea of what they may be after but remember that this would be the best scenario for them so you could always offer less and then work up to a sum that you are both happy to accept. Or you could ask them directly if they have a figure in mind and then work around that to try and negotiate on something lower - remember you start low and they start high and you eventually try to meet somewhere in the middle.

As to rating the advice, apologies for that, there is a bug in the system which we sometimes get and it prevents you from posting your rating. Instead, you can just type your selection on here (e.g. OK, Good, Excellent) then we will process it manually later. Thank you

Customer: Many thanks. I am givin a good rating
Ben Jones :

thank you all the best for now

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