How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • Go back-and-forth until satisfied
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Ed Turner Your Own Question
Ed Turner
Ed Turner,
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 2891
Experience:  Director and Consultant Solicitor (Self-Employed) at Ed Turner LLB Limited
107013918
Type Your Law Question Here...
Ed Turner is online now

I would like to know if I have a case against my employer,

Customer Question

I would like to know if I have a case against my employer
JA: Have you discussed this with a manager or HR? Or with a lawyer?
Customer: Can II give you the full story as its a bit complicated I started in SHG (Southern Housing Group) as an Accounting Officer. After approximately 1.5 years I moved teams to become an Associate Financial Accountant. My manager at the time was aware that I had BiPolar from when I moved teams. From the beginning as an Associate Financial Accountant there was a lot of pressure to perform and meet deadlines. I was always eager to meet the challenges / deadlines set. However over year end and audit the hours required to get the job done - I feel were unreasonable and beyond the scope of additional hours at times required as stated in our contract. I was very open with my manager about the effect that this was having on my mental health and bi-polar and was advised that this was the career that I chose.
In 2020 (13/07/20) I sent an email to my current manager at the time advising I had worked the weekend and the timesheet I was keeping that was tracking my overtime over the past 8 week period was showing that I have ended on 176 hours in credit. I asked if there was any way I could have some of the time back in lieu, from my records I can not see that I received a response. 
In 2021 (21/04/21) I sent an email to my current manager at the time advising that in the previous two months I had worked an additional 139 hours and had taken seven hours back as time off in lieu. I mentioned that I had to go to HR as I felt that was taking a toll on my bi-polar and I wanted to prevent this ending up in me being signed off of work and my depressive episodes spiralling out of control. HR arranged for me to be assessed by Occ Health.12/05/21 - I received an occupational health report from Merrrygold Health and it was sent to HR to be reviewed. 31/08/21 - I received a copy of letter received from psychiatrist (Mental health doctor) to my GP advising that I was having to change my meds in order to cope with work situation and to be able continue to carry on25/05/21 had a meeting with HR (Carlina George) and current manager to go through ways of coping with the stress was advised that putting my teams on red, yellow or green would be the best way to resolve the issue - the only problem being that even when I was on do not disturb or busy people would still contact me. Following the meeting with HR - the pressure and stress did not subside. I was having to act as a senior overseeing another member of staff and report to my manager what he was doing and what was outstanding so she could ensure the work was getting done. I had a meeting with my manager to ask if I was the senior and told that I was just his colleague.
Although officially my working hours were 8-4 I was regularly emailing my manager outside of these hours (ranging from 4am to 11pm). This was ignored as there was unbelievable pressure for everyone within the finance department to get the job done as well as a new system being brought in an unreasonable time frame. The new system was being used as selling point wfor a merger that the company was trying to push through. Any objections or issues pointed out with the new system we were told to figure out as it was going ahead.
I was finding the hours growing increasingly unreasonable again and an opportunity arose to apply for a role as a Sales and Marketing Programme Manager in the beginning of 2022. I applied and got the role. 
After I told my manager that I had gotten the role. She and the current Operational Finance Director at the time told me I would have to work my two months notice and hand in an official resignation. This was because she needed me to help with the new system and did not have the knowledge to bring it in on her own. I spoke to HR and they said it was a case of the two departments - Sales and Marketing and Finance having a discussion and negotiating the terms. 
Ultimately it was decided I would have to work the two month notice period so I was working two jobs - my new role as Sales and Marketing programme Manager
JA: What is your employment status? Are you an employee, freelancer, consultant or contractor? Do you belong to a union?
Customer: I am on long term sick at the moment but still employed
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: I dont think so - I think this is all the information for now :)
Submitted: 9 days ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ed Turner replied 9 days ago.

Hello. I am Ed, a Solicitor qualified in England and Wales with over a decade’s experience in the legal profession advising clients.

I specialise in Commercial Contracts, Business Transactions, Employment, Dispute Resolution, Personal Injury and Road Traffic Law and shall be reviewing your legal problem today.

I shall be delighted to talk with you by phone to discuss your issue in greater detail if you accept the site’s automatic offer of a Premium Service Phone Call.

Expert:  Ed Turner replied 9 days ago.

I am sorry that you are facing a potential dispute with your employer over your mental health condition but hopefully I can assist you in resolving the matter before it escalates and you are forced to incur significant further legal costs.

Customer: replied 9 days ago.
I would be happy to accept the phone call but since my second biopsy - I really struggle to hear. Could my husband talk for me?
Expert:  Ed Turner replied 9 days ago.

I shall be delighted to speak to you today if you accept the site’s automatic offer.

Any additional charges for a Premium Service Phone Call are displayed with the site’s option.

To decide if you want a Premium Service Phone Call, I am happy to provide my answer by text on the Portal first. Once you have considered my written answer, you may then accept the offer of a Premium Service Phone Call.

I have not received a notification that you have accepted a Phone Call.

Customer: replied 9 days ago.
Due to my hearing, please can I have the answer via text. Once my hearing has improved a little, I would then be happy for a call.
Expert:  Ed Turner replied 9 days ago.

As you have over two years’ continuous employment, then you may lodge a Claim with the Regional Employment Tribunal for Unfair Dismissal if you are Dismissed or forced to leave your job because of the way your employer has treated you, which is a Constructive Dismissal.

Your employer must follow a fair Disciplinary and Investigation procedure before they decide to dismiss you.

However, if you have been Dismissed or Constructively Dismissed based on an Inadmissible Reason, then the Dismissal will be Automatically Unfair regardless of the length of your Employment. Inadmissible Reasons for Dismissal include Dismissal on the basis of a Protected Characteristic (Age, Disability, Race, Religion or Belief, Sex, Sexual Orientation, Marriage/Civil Partnership, Pregnancy and Maternity, Gender Reassignment), for making a Disclosure In The Public Interest to a Prescribed Person within your Employer or external Regulatory Body (i.e. “Whistleblowing”), Trade Union membership or activities, asserting a statutory right under section 104 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 (“ERA”) or for a health and safety reason under section 100 of the ERA.

In Discrimination and Whistleblowing cases, in addition to the Basic and Compensatory Awards for Unfair Dismissal, you may also claim Damages for Detriment and Injury to Feelings.

A Claimant employee has three months from the Effective Date of Dismissal, or the Discrimination or Detrimental Act complained of to lodge a Claim Form ET1 with the Regional Employment Tribunal. This is a very brief time limit which is strictly enforced. I therefore recommend that you act as quickly as possible by instructing specialist employment solicitors to protect your position and advise you fully on your prospects of success.

You must also notify the Government’s free and impartial employment dispute advisory service: the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (“ACAS”) to commence the compulsory Early Conciliation Process (“ECP”). ACAS are not a firm of solicitors or legal aid providers, but they will attempt to facilitate an early settlement between the parties without the need for Tribunal Proceedings.

During the ECP, the three month-limitation period to issue a Claim Form ET1 is suspended. If ECP fails, ACAS will issue the parties with a Certificate which will give the Claimant at least one month from the date of the Certificate (depending on the timings) to issue a Claim Form ET1.

Expert:  Ed Turner replied 9 days ago.

Your employers should schedule a “Return to Work” meeting with you in order to discuss the issues and any reasonable adjustments that need to be made to accommodate your illness and prevent a repeat of it.

Employment claims for mental injury and distress usually arise from the Equality Act 2010 and must be issued in the Regional Employment Tribunal. Such claims include Discrimination and Detriment resulting in mental and emotional distress and injury to feelings caused by Discrimination based on a Protected Characteristic: Age, Disability, Race, Religion or Belief, Sex, Sexual Orientation, Marriage/Civil Partnership, Pregnancy and Maternity and Gender Reassignment.

Arguably, the closest claim for “Occupational Stress” an employee can bring against an employer is a claim for Discrimination on the grounds of a Disability under the Equality Act after the employee has been diagnosed with Depression, Bipolar Disorder or Borderline Personality Disorder following their employer’s treatment of them.

A Disability is defined as a physical or mental impairment that has a “substantial” and “long-term” (i.e., 12 months or more) negative effect on the employee’s ability to do normal daily activities. You or your Employer will need to obtain expert medical evidence to ascertain whether your medical condition amounts to a Disability.

Your employer has a duty of care to ensure a safe working environment under health and safety law. You may assert a statutory right, assert a safe workplace and report (“blow the whistle”) on unsafe working practises to your employer internally or the Health and Safety Executive (or other relevant state criminal or civil police and regulatory body), which may give rise to an Employment Tribunal Claim or a civil claim for breach of contract if your employer fails in their duty towards you or subjects you to a detriment or dismisses you for reporting such issues.

Expert:  Ed Turner replied 9 days ago.

I hope this is a satisfactory initial reply to your question and you understand my recommendations. Please revert to me if you do not understand anything and require clarification of my answer and I shall be delighted to assist.

I can also offer a Premium Service Consultation for an additional fee if you need detailed and bespoke legal advice. If you accept, I will pass you my direct email address and phone number. I can review any relevant documentation and consult with you by telephone for around 20 minutes. This will give you a clearer picture of your legal position and your potential options for progressing the matter to the next stage.

Kind regards

LawyerEd

Expert:  Ed Turner replied 9 days ago.

I hope that you are satisfied with my reply and wish you all the very best in resolving this matter.

If you require further legal advice from me, please create a new text thread on the portal and tag @EdTurner in the expert box. I will be notified of your request and prioritise it.

Kind regards

LawyerEd