Many thanks for your patience. The starting point is that if you do not have 2 years continuous service with an employer you are not protected against unfair or constructive dismissals. This means you could be dismissed or forced to resign for more or less any reason, as long as it is not linked to a protected characteristic, such as a disability, age, gender, race, religion, etc. The most likely link here would be your health and it would be relevant if you are deemed to have a disability.
In the legal sense of the word, disability can have a broad meaning and there is no single list of medical conditions that qualify. Instead, to establish whether a person is disabled, they need to show that they meet the legal definition of a ‘disability’.
The Equality Act 2010 defines a disability as a “physical or mental impairment that has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on a person’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities”.
I will break this definition down:
• Physical or mental impairment – this can include nearly any medical condition;
• Substantial effect – the effect must be more than minor or trivial;
• Long-term - the effect of the impairment must either have lasted or be likely to last for at least 12 months;
• Normal day-to-day activities – these could include anything considered ‘normal’ in a person's normal daily routine (e.g. walking, driving, speaking, eating, washing, etc.)
If a person satisfies the above criteria, they will be classified as being disabled and will have automatic protection against discrimination, which means that they must not be treated unfavourably because of their disability. In addition, their employer would have a duty to make reasonable adjustments if they are likely to be placed at a substantial disadvantage when compared to non-disabled employees.
What amounts to ‘reasonable adjustments’ can have a wide interpretation and often depends on the individual circumstances. Below are some examples:
• making adjustments to work premises;
• allocating some of the employee’s duties to others;
• transferring the employee to fill an existing suitable vacancy;
• altering the employee’s hours of work;
• allowing the employee to be absent during working hours for rehabilitation, assessment or treatment connected to their disability;
• acquiring or modifying specialist equipment;
• providing supervision or other support.
If someone who is disabled is being treated unfavourably because of their disability or their employer has failed to make reasonable adjustments it would potentially amount to disability discrimination. So you could consider a claim on these grounds.
In terms of the false allegations, that is potential defamation. The issue is that this is not easy to pursue. It is very expensive and complex so realistically it may not be possible. You can of course accuse the employer of making defamatory comments if they are alleging you did something wrong when in fact there is no evidence of it and they have not properly investigated it.
Finally, you may have rights on grounds of negligence if they were to provide an inaccurate reference with the allegations.
This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the steps you need to follow to pursue this matter 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