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james bruce
james bruce, Solicitor-Advocate
Category: Law
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Experience:  Owner at James Bruce Solicitors
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I booked a Statutory paternity leave not knowing I will

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I booked a Statutory paternity leave not knowing I will still be on furlough, can I cancel the statutory paternity leave and ask my employer to pay me a furlough pay?
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: In United Kingdom in London.
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: I booked a paternity leave in August for 01 September to 14 September not knowing I will still be on furlough, so I would like to cancel this as I will be worse off if I take statutory paternity leave.
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: Yes when I ask my employer of to tell me till what date I will be on furlough, they are not giving the exact date and mentioned to me that the scheme is till October but we can ask you to start work at anytime? How much notice they must give to start work? although it will be work from home.

Hello, I hope you are well. My name is***** am a solicitor advocate and I will be assisting you with your question today. I am very sorry to hear of the problem you are experiencing and I will do my best to help you with this matter.

Customer: replied 6 days ago.
Customer: replied 6 days ago.
Please reply so that I can have a chat history for me reference.

It is difficult for employers to give firm commitments regarding return from furlough.

Currently furlough is due to end on the 31st October.

Employers can inform employees to return to work with very short notice. Legally, there is no minimum time to be informed to return. However is should be reasonable notice which would mean 48 hours. Notice should be given in writing which includes email.

Customer: replied 6 days ago.
My employer has not processed the paternity pay yet, the one I booked from 01 to 14 September so while still on furlough beyond 14 September can I ask employer to cancel the paternity and pay me furlough rate as otherwise I will be worse off on paternity pay till 14 September.
Customer: replied 6 days ago.
As I was not aware that my employer plans to keep me on furlough although employer was aware of this and did not let me know about this. When I asked a question about my furlough date they mentioned, that the scheme is till October.
Customer: replied 6 days ago.
Also while they placed me on furlough I had work and my line manager made me teach him my work so that he could do this in my absence as he did not had enough work. So should he have not gone on furlough for part time?

Yes you can ask your employer to consider cancelling the paternity leave and to keep you on furlough. They can consider the request, but do not have to grant it.

Again the current furlough runs until the end of October. Then unless the government implements something new, or continues furlough, employers will either have to restart work with their employees or consider alternatives, such as redundancies or agreed unpaid leave.

When you say you had to teach your line manager your work, did you do that whilst on furlough?

Customer: replied 5 days ago.
Once he told me that I would go on furlough and also he did call me for few work related queries while I was on furlough.

Thank you for confirming.

If you carried out ANY work for the employer whist actually on furlough, then the employer could be guilty of tax fraud. NO employee was allowed to carry out ANY work whilst on furlough.

Answering a call, may be a very fine grey area but possibly still not allowed.

You could report that matter to HMRC if you choose to.

But currently, with regards ***** ***** situation, the request is at the discretion of the employer.

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