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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 50161
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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I have just paid a recruitment company 1000 pounds. They got

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I have just paid a recruitment company 1000 pounds. They got me a member of staff who was supposed to work a 3-4 month contract. He walked out after 3 weeks.
I would like my 1000 pounds back but the recruitment company says their contracts are so tight I will never get it back.
I have never signed anything they just emailed me their terms.
The member of staff did not sign a contract. He now wants payment for 3 weeks work because he says he was "employed" by us.
I have now paid 1000 pounds to the recruitment company and he wants 1000 pounds. I end up with nothing but 1 incomplete web page.
Is there anything I can do?

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

Please can you summarise their terms in relation to the candidates employment with you?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
They did at first offer me a discounted rate, which they said they would take away if I did not pay them on time. I did pay them the 1000 pounds after their 7 day payment period had expired. They have threatened me with legal action to claim the full 4500 pound un-discounted rate if I came at them for the 1000 pounds.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He was brought in as a developer for a 4 month contract, He was supposed to be employed by Guestlist Media Limited from the 6th of July.His contract is here did not sign it.
Enclosed is his letter of resignation. Which are not the same reasons he told the agency.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I had told him in the morning of the day he left that we would sign the contract this evening to which he replied fine. He had also brought no other issues up with of any significance whatsoever.

OK thank you, ***** ***** it with me. I am in court today so will prepare my advice during the day and get back to you at the earliest opportunity. There is no need to wait here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Thank you.

Many thanks for your patience. In the circumstances I am not confident you will have much luck recovering the fees you have paid. Having read the terms and conditions which you had agreed, your rights are quite clear. I know you said you never signed these terms but that is not a legal requirement for them to be binding. If you were issued with them before you decided to use the agency’s services and did not challenge them, then it would be assumed that you had agreed to them, whether you had signed them or not.

Under the terms, you are due to pay a fee once you have permanently taken on someone introduced to you by that agency. It specifically says that the minimum fee charged would be £2,000 and that would be regardless of how long they worked there for. There is the provision for reduced fees if someone leaves within 8 weeks of starting but you would only get a 12.5% rebate of the fees charged for weeks they did not work in those 8 weeks. So you appear to have already been given a substantial discount. Based on all the terms you will only be able to pursue them if you can show that they had acted negligently in their selection of this person, for example if they knew or should have known that he was unsuitable for the role and that he was unlikely to last in it. There is nothing stopping you from trying to pursue them or putting them under pressure to reconsider their position but be mindful that you do not have a bulletproof case here.

This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the steps you need to take if you wanted to pursue is further, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you

Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question and if you need me to discuss the next steps in more detail? In the meantime please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts from the top of the page. The question will not close and I can continue with my advice as discussed. Thank you

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok,, well they threatened me with the un-discounted 4.5K invoice if I decided to pursue this. Will they be able to chase me for this, should I just leave it in that case. And the employee who left without giving me notice. Is he still due his full wage for the three weeks?

It is possible that they may find it difficult to chase you for the full amount because they had already given you an offer you had accepted for the discounted rate. So you can argue that this is going to amount to a breach of contract. But it does not stop them from trying. As to the employee’s pay, I am afraid you are legally required to pay him for the time he worked even if he did not give you notice at the end. For the breach of contract you can pursue him for any losses incurred from this, but not the recruitment fees as he was not required to stay for a minimum period, it would just be fees with getting a short term replacement, so the difference in ay if you had to pay more.

If your original question has been answered I would be grateful if you could please quickly rate my answer by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts at the top of the page - it only takes a second to do and is an important part of our process. I can still answer follow up questions afterwards if needed. Thank you

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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
ok, but it would be easy for them to chase for the balance of the discounted rate.. as I only paid 40%, I had better not even give him a piece of my mind then!

oh I see sorry I thought the £1k was the full discounted rate, in that case they can potentially go for the full amount if they really wanted to. Whether they are successful is don to the courts but ideally you do't want to expose yourself to further risk.