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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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I have a quick question.... i have been working for british

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hi i have a quick question.... i have been working for british gas for over 12 years and this year i lied to my manager about an death in the family did take place but was abroad and i told my employer it took place in this country my manager found out that it wasn't a death in this country and called me for an interview i was lying to cover up this one lie but at the end when i was not convincing i told my manager that I'm 6 weeks pregnant which i was and i was upset about my pregnancy and didn't know what to do with this responsibility and way my manager passed my case to hr ...they asked for proof from my doctors and i told them i was on stress tablet all this was confirmed by my gp ... i had 2 investigation interview by a different manager and after 4 weeks of having my interview i have a disciplinary hearing i am so stressed and don't know what the out come will be as all this has happened due to my pregnancy and stress please could you give me some advice on will i get dismissal .

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

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
hi ben could you please give me the most possible out come in my disciplinary hearing.

Over the course of the 12 years you have worked for them, have you had any other issues? Also, based on what you have described, what would be your ideal outcome, so that I can look at your options. Thank you

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
i have never had any other issues at work this was the first and i have been pregnant before been sick during pregnancy other than that no
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
i am on sick at the moment due to sickness and stress pregnancy related

OK, thank you for your responses. I will review the relevant information and laws and will get back to you in a short while. There is no need to wait here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Also, please do not responded to this message as it will just push your questions to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you.

Many thanks for your patience. It is clear that you are guilty of misconduct here because you lied to your employer to get time off from your work. So in a loose sense, if you have profited from this in having given time off on full pay, you may have defrauded them. However, do not worry too much about this as it is not a criminal issue and it is not as serious as it may sound just because the word fraud is mentioned. It is more of a misconduct matter where you have been dishonest.

The employer is entirely within their rights to discipline you over this. I understand that you are pregnant so if what you did was due to you being pregnant and not thinking straight at the time, then certainly use that to your advantage. It does not provide you a full excuse for your actions but it can reduce the severity.

Whilst a dismissal could always be the option the employer takes, I do not think this would be the case here, based on the fact it was an isolated incident, you have a long and, hopefully, clean record and it was likely affected by your pregnancy. I would therefore expect a warning, which you should accept. If the result is a dismissal then you should consider taking this matter further.

This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the rights to have to challenge this if it results in dismissal, 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

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Thank you. If this results in dismissal, an appeal can be submitted to the employer straight after the disciplinary outcome is communicated. Your main grounds would be to argue that this was a harsh decision which doe not reflect the seriousness of the offence, your length of service and disciplinary record, plus you were not thinking straight because of the stress with the pregnancy. If the appeal is rejected a claim for unfair dismissal and/or pregnancy discrimination can be made in the employment tribunal. The time limit to claim is 3 months from the date of dismissal and the claimant needs to have at least 2 years' continuous service with that employer.

A new feature in the employment tribunal’s claims process is mandatory early conciliation with ACAS. This requires prospective claimants to notify ACAS and provide details of their intended claim and they would then try to negotiate between the claimant and respondent to seek out of court settlement in order to avoid having to take the claim to the tribunal. It is possible for the parties to refuse to engage in these negotiations, or that they are unsuccessful, in which case they would get permission to proceed with making the claim in the tribunal.

If negotiations are initiated and settlement is reached, then the claimant would agree not to proceed with the claim in return for the agreed financial settlement.

The conciliation procedure and the form to fill in can be found here:

In terms of the time limits within which a claim must be presented, the early conciliation process places a ‘stop’ on that and the time between notifying ACAS and them issuing permission to proceed with the claim would not count for the purposes of these time limits.