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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 66918
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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I am talking to you from the north east of England. I am a

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Hello, I am talking to you from the north east of England. I am a nurse and I currently work in the private sector. I am in the shielding category of people and therefore have been told that I cannot go to work. My company will not give guarantee my job when I can return to work and I am currently in financial trouble because I am only getting ssp. Can you please help and advise. C Cardigan
JA: Have you discussed this with a manager or HR? Or with a lawyer?
Customer: Yes with my manager but I cannot afford a lawyer
JA: What is your employment status? Are you an employee, freelancer, consultant or contractor? Do you belong to a union?
Customer: I am an an employee but at the mo I'm not in a union. I did not feel that I should be. In hind sight yes I should have
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: I have been trying to get a letter from my employer to say that my job is safe until I can return. They will not do that.

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

How long have you worked there for?

Customer: replied 17 days ago.
I started working for them early august last year.

Thanks. What do you specifically want to know about this, please?

Customer: replied 17 days ago.
Can you help me?
Customer: replied 17 days ago.
Can then they terminate my employment and is there anything I can do to persuade them to furlough me? They own a lot of companies in addition to care homes. Most are in the hospitality industry, they must have furloughed them.

Why do you think they will terminate your employment, have they suggested that?

Customer: replied 17 days ago.
I have asked them if they will guarantee my job when I can go back. They wont do that.

Ok thanks. If they were not going to guarantee your job on your return, then usually you would only be able to challenge that by resigning and claiming constructive dismissal. However, as you have been continuously employed at you place of work for less than 2 years then your employment rights will unfortunately be somewhat limited. Most importantly, you will not be protected against unfair dismissal or constructive dismissal. This means that your employer can dismiss you or force you to resign for more or less any reason, and without following a fair procedure, as long as the decision is not based on a reason which makes a dismissal automatically unfair. These include:

· Discrimination due to a protected characteristic (i.e. because of gender, race, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation, etc.)

· Taking, or trying to take, leave for family reasons including pregnancy, maternity/paternity leave, parental leave, adoption leave or leave for dependants

However, if the dismissal had nothing to do with any of the above exceptions, you would not be able to challenge it. In that case your only protection would be if you were dismissed in breach of contract. That would usually happen if you were not paid any contractual notice period due to you (unless you were dismissed for gross misconduct, where no notice would be due). If you did not have a written contract in place you would be entitled to the minimum statutory notice period of 1 week. The employer would either have to allow you to work that notice period and pay you as normal, or they instead have to pay you in lieu of notice, where you are paid for the equivalent of the notice pay but your employment is terminated immediately.

You can of course ask them to furlough you but that is entirely up to them and if they wanted to they could play it as per the above, meaning you could potentially be dismissed/ forced to leave.

Does this answer your query?

Customer: replied 17 days ago.
no. It is not my fault I am not able to work. My mental health is being severely tested as a result of their complete non committal as to the fact that I will have a job to go back to. I am not off work because of anything to do with my choice.

I fully appreciate that but in the end your rights are determined by your length of service which in this case does not provide you with the unfair dismissal protection you would require

Customer: replied 17 days ago.
Ok thank you Ben for your advice. C

You are most welcome

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