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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 50191
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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There; I worked at a firm years very successfully

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Hello there;
I worked at a firm for 9 years very successfully with excellent references from the CEO of firm. He also hired me and was genuinely sorry to see me go.
I resigned in April, 2015 after I was offered an opportunity by a start-up firm based in Belgravia. A financial services broker. I was given an employment contract (which I have) - £80,000 salary, plus benefits - no probation period - plus bonuses/commission - performance related.
At the end the first month - the 2 partners felt I wasn’t picking things up fast enough and decided to let me go. Since we were only a team of 3 with a 4th person part-time - I was escorted out of the office amicably at the time, asked to pack up my stuff - and then paid some outstanding expenses in cash. I was verbally advised that my salary to date would be paid. It was very final at the time and my keys to the office were taken away from me at that moment too. It was certainly very emotionally draining, but that is how financial services can work sometimes. I was out.
Following that, several days later I was called out of the blue by the instigating director (A) of my exit. He suddenly wanted me back in the office to "work a one week notice period" even though I had been given no written formal notice on the day i was let go.
I felt this was extremely insensitive since they had made a very purposeful exit and emotionally to return to what had been a rather bullying aggressive environment felt like a gratuitous afterthought.
In the end after lots of back and forth email, on the 5th of Aug - I received a written cost calculation of what the employer deemed I was owed. Sent by (A) from the official company email to me with a spreadsheet of what I was owed. Apparently as follows:
Gross mothly salary 6,667
Tax 2,187
Net monthly salary 4,480
Net daily salary 195
Net salary payable 2,045
I countered that email received immediately having noted that they had omitted top pay pro-rata holiday and an included Bank Holiday which is written into my contract as a paid day and part of my holiday.
Since then I have not heard from (A), although his partner (B) asked me to forward the correspondence up until that point since he is keen to have the matter resolved. (A) has been silent since. Today (B) called me and intimated that he has fallen out irrevocably with (A) on other matters. But because we all know each other outside of the office (which was a large reason why I joined the start-up in the first place), he wanted the monies owed matter resolved ASAP.
(A) remains intransigent and not prepared to pay either the amount he miscalculated and had sent me above - or my corrected version with the holidays pro-rated in:
Total days in year = 365
Total working days in a year = 260
£80,000 Gross Salary divided by 260 = £307.69
Total Days worked 12 Days @ £307.69 = £3692.31 Income Tax @ 30.84%
TOTAL PAY DUE = £2553.60 NET -
Please can you help? I am currently unemployed since June (although have not registered myself for the dole - since I do not wish to be a burden on the state and am actively looking for work daily.
can you help me?
Hello, my name is***** am a solicitor on this site and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. When were you due to be paid officially?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I was due to be paid at the end of May. I joined beginning of May. so in fact I have never reserved a wage from them since I joined up until now

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

There is no reply to my followup below Ben. I have given you quite a lot of info, I am not sure why you have not given me a more detailed response

Hi, I have not yet provided a response, I only asked an initial query, still preparing my response for you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thanks Ben. Please do confer with your colleagues. I am online awaiting your expert insight on this matter

What has happened here is that the employer has acted unlawfully and committed an unlawful deduction from wages, which is made illegal under the Employment Rights Act 1996.
Under law, an employer can only make deductions from, or withhold an employee’s wages 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;
• If their contract specifically allows for the deductions to be made; or
• If the employee has given their explicit written agreement for the deductions to be made.
If none of the above exemptions apply, the deductions (or failure to pay you as in this case) will most likely be unlawful. In order to try and resolve this, the employer should be contacted in writing, advised that this is being treated as unlawful deduction of wages and ask them to pay back the money within 7 days. Advise them that if they fail to pay the money that is owed, legal proceedings could follow.
If the employer does not return the money as requested, the following options are available:
1. Employment Tribunal - the time limit to claim is only 3 months from the date the deductions were made. So if you were due to be paid at the end of May, you should have made the claim by the end of August so you appear to be out of time.
2. County Court – this is an alternative way to claim and the advantage is that the time limit is a much longer 6 years and is usually used if you are out of time to claim in the Tribunal. The claim can be made online by going to:
Hopefully by warning the employer you are aware of your rights and are not going to hesitate taking further action they will be prompted to reconsider their position and work towards resolving this.
I trust this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating (selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts at the top of the page). If for any reason you are unhappy with my response or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Ben,

Thats interesting.

So in this case,

1) it appears that the employer absolutely knew that I had until the end of August to set up an employment tribunal. That being the case, the periods of silence can be taken as some strategic/constructive delay (or whatever the legal word is for that)?

2) If i go down the country court claim,

will he/they be liable for any legal expenses incurred if I win, as I probably will based on your advice - (notwithstanding the opening disclaimer on guidance etc)?

3) Can I sue them for damages too, or is this something that the court will take into account anyway given the conniving manner in which this has been dealt with; the time period lapsed, interest lost of earned money - accrued to them etc.?

4) I have not been sent any paperwork to date by this employer other than my official contract prior to my start date on the 4th May. Surely I should have been sent a P45 etc - none of which has been sent to me?

On reflection, I was due to be paid in the June payroll since I worked up until the end of May. So I can still pursue the Tribunal route probably.

Hi, to answer your queries: 1. That may not necessarily be the case – it is essentially up to you to ensure that the claim is submitted in time so regardless of their silence you could have still made the claim before the 3 months were up2. If the claim is below £10k, which it is, then each party will be responsible for its own legal costs, regardless of who the winner/loser is3. There are not many damages that have been incurred in addition to the money owed – interest will just be a few pounds and it can be added to the court when the claim is decided4. They should have sent a P45 but cannot be forced to do so – you can contact HMRC directly to see if this will cause any issues but it should not and they can issue you with any replacement paperwork as necessary. I trust this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating (selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts at the top of the page). If for any reason you are unhappy with my response or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Ben,

Thank you.

My understanding is that when a new employee is hired by a company, that firm needs to essentially set you up with National Insurance against your payroll so that when the first salary comes along - your salary and NI have a corresponding tax code generated etc. I am not sure if there is cost/tax associated to this process of hiring, so forgive my conjecture - but could the company be constructively trying to avoid any such related expense/costs?

On point number 2. in your answer - do you have a ballpark or guesstimate in your experience on the sort of fees I am likely to incur should I go to a tribunal / country court? (I mentioned tribunal because in fact I was due to be paid in the June payroll - meaning I still qualify for tribunal option if I register tomorrow. Do you have a link for that?

In terms of damages, not to be overly-litigious, but this has been a very taxing exchange and much energy and stress has been generated to come to this point. I suppose part of my point is to ask you if there are other considerations at this juncture that I aught to consider seriously which might be in my advantage to know of, in your experience.

Please reply as thoroughly as you can so that we can hopefully part ways at that point.

Many thanks for your advice this far already.

thanks I will respond shortly with my full answer
Hi, so the employer does have a duty to set you up under PAYE so that any relevant taxes and NI are deducted at source but I certainly cannot comment on what their reasons for not doing that are. Terre is no direct cost associated with that, it is just forwarding your details on to HMRC and the system should be in place already anyway.
The costs associated with pursuing the claim – assuming a claim value of around £2,500 it will be as follows:
Tribunal – £160 issue fee, followed by a £230 hearing fee
Court - £105 claim fee, followed by a £170 hearing fee
To claim via the tribunal you need to approach ACAS first and try to negotiate with the employer with ACAS’ help, only if that is unsuccessful would you be allowed to proceed to tribunal. Don’t worry, the time limit is put on hold whilst you use their service:
As to further damages unfortunately the law does not consider stress, anxiety, energy expended etc as something that will be compensated – it is a given that this would happen in any dispute so it would not be considered as extra damages or be compensated.
Hope this clarifies things for you?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

a final question Ben,

Thank you btw for your patience. Your answer already had been highly elucidating. I can certainly see why everyone needs a good lawyer in their life!!

So, today (A) sent me an email basically saying I am harassing him by chasing my money. He is a very slippery character as you might be starting to gather and a lot of what he does is highly premeditated.

He sent me a link about harrassment trying to essentially make me go away - but in truth, beyond telling him how upset I am about all of this and numerous letters following up his last email which detailed his acknowledged amount owed to me written by his own hand (on email in print), I am surely entitled to have chased on multiple fronts (it is not an inconsequential amount of money).

I feel that there is an element extortion on his part, since in the UK - if you hire employees and offer them a contract; sure it is right for me to assume that until the day one is fired and provided one has tried to the best of one's ability to execute his duties (assumed here is that the recruiters will have carried out the requisite due diligence prior to an offer being made in order to deduce the appropriateness and fit of a prospective employee - before making that person an offer of employment and signing a contract to that effect.

If they have hired someone and later discovered (subjective/objective) that person to, in their opinion be "inappropriate" for the role - they are bound by the contract and exposed to the salary owed and cannot claim that an employee is owed zero - which is what they or rather (A) is technically trying do here, and then using threats such as "harrassment" to try and fob me off.

Thanks. Please answer those last questions as faithfully as you have all the rest, and I am sure thereafter I can let you move on.

many thanks

He may think this is harassment, but it does not mean you cannot pursue him via the formal channels to try and get what you are legally owed. So if you have tried the ‘nice’ route first, by dealing with him directly and he sees that as harassment, then just drop that and proceed to the more formal options of tribunal or court. And you are correct in your assumptions – if someone hires an employee, they are obliged to pay them as per contract, or agreement and at least the minimum wage. If it eventually transpires that they are not the right person for them and wish to remove them then they may terminate their employment. But any work done up to them must be remunerated – you cannot say that you can’t pay this person as they were not suitable – you terminate their employment first and then obviously you do not pay them afterwards but they must be paid up from the start of their employment right up until the end, including notice period.
Ben Jones and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.


I want to thank you immensely for your wise counsel on this.

Definitely money well spent in extracting your obvious experience steer.

It gives me no amount of satisfaction having to pursue this avenue since, to my mind, it would seem a matter that should have had a line drawn under it a long time ago. It seems to me there are other matters at play here behind the scenes to do with non-registration of a new company trading out of a residential address and hiring staff probably as well as the tax status (corporate) which makes (A) so vehemently opposed to paying a salary.

Either way, I will find out.

If I would like to retain your counsel or that of your firms at a later date, is there a way that I can reach your or any of the solicitors on this thread again - either by email or by phone?


07507 648 298

You are more than welcome to come back to us at any point on this site but we can only assist online, for example we cannot officially act for you in court proceedings. But if you need online help then you are welcome back at any time. Also if you want to specifically use me in the future please start your question with 'for Ben Jones and it will get directed to me. All the best