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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 66466
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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Hope you're well. Assistant: Where are you? It matters

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Hi, hope you're well.
Assistant: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: I'd like to ask you my situation is as follows:
Assistant: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: I'm a sales rep. and I think that what my employer does with my pay is illegal. I'm paid fixed salary plus commission. The thing is that if I dont meet their sales plan ex 5000 but did only 4900 I'm not paid any commission and on top they reduce 0.5% of the plan from my overall commission from all customers who did meet the sales plan
Assistant: Have you discussed this with a manager or HR? Or with a lawyer?
Customer: Yes I tried a lot of times but they just try to overtalk you
Assistant: What is your employment status? Are you an employee, freelancer, consultant or contractor? Do you belong to a union?
Customer: Employee
Assistant: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: I stay in leeds but the company head office is in london

Hello, I’m Ben, a UK lawyer and will be dealing with your case today. Firstly, I need to ask some initial questions to determine the legal position.

Why do they make this deduction and how long have you worked there for?

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Hi Ben I'm good thx yes sure

No problem. Please provide the information requested

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I'm working with them fo almost 2 years now. At the beggining the way in which they explained things I understood that for example I have a sales plan for each of my customers, say the plan is 5000pounds/month, if I meet it or exceed I'm paid 1,5% from sales but if I haven't met it say sold only 4900 then( as I thought it is the case, they pay me 1,5% for 4900 but deduct 0,5% from 5000 so, approximately 1% net in commission) but it turned out to be that in such a scenario I'm not only penalised with 0,5% but I'm not paid for 4900 of sales at all

Thank you. I will get back to you with my answer as soon as I can, which will be at some point today. The system will notify you when this happens. Please do not reply in the meantime as this may unnecessarily delay my response. Many thanks.

Many thanks for your patience. Can I just check if you have the commission policy to hand so I can check what it says about this?

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
sure, that what my employment contract states.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
It was everything good so far because I was performing well, always exceeding their expectations but now the situation on the market changed, the sales decreased on average by about 15% and here all the story begin, they are expecting me to not only maintain the previous figures but to show them an increase which is impossible now. They just hand me the commission every month saying spread an increase of 1.5k over you customers, sign it and send it back, any talks about reduction the plans are useless.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
what was the peak point is the salary for September in which I was 2 weeks on holiday. They haven't made any kind of adjustments to the plan to take into consideration the thing of me being absent for 2 weeks. They just counted the commission in a normal way.

Thank you. I have read the clause a few times but it still does not make full sense to me. There are some discrepancies in there, like the table says you get 1.5% commission regardless and they only deduct the full 1.5% if invoices are overdue.

All they say in the event you sell below the plan is that you get deducted 0.5% commission but there is nothing that says you get no commission at all. After all, the table would still say that you should get commission.

The only thing that they could rely on is the clause that says you get 1.5% commission if the turnover is equal to or more than the plan.

So it is a badly written contact that’s for sure. What they should have done is said that the reference to commission in the table is dependent on the following clauses, rather than guaranteed. Then they could have relied on the part which says you only get commission if the sales are equal to or better than the plan.

The only way for you to challenge the is to make a claim for the unpaid commission and argue that the wording is too uncertain to allow them to rely on it to that extent. In the end it would be down to the tribunal or court to decide whether that is indeed the case.

Does this answer your query?

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Thank you very much for your time. Can I also ask you if there is any point in registering with a trade union at this point in time or is better to make a claim now? I tried to speak with management regarding the issue but it was pointless.

The potential issue with unions is that they may not help with an issue which was already ongoing at the time you joined them, or they may delay help with it for some time. Otherwise everyone would only join unions when they need help. So overall, probably not worth it for this specific issue

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I feel like they are going to sack me in any way in next 3-4 months simply because of poor performance.
I heard from some colleagues that once my director lost a case in court on unfair dismissal but he later did everything possible(writing letters to new employer) and the claimant was made redundant from her new job in another company. My question is for how long can I delay such a claim?

what claim specifically?

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
For unpaid commission

you have 6 years to make it if you go to the County Court

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