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 ReadyLaw Your Own Question
ReadyLaw, Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 5011
Experience:  Bar Professional Training Course
Type Your Law Question Here...
ReadyLaw is online now

My husband is a self employed driving instructor (40 years)

Customer Question

Good morning. my husband is a self employed driving instructor (40 years) and is franchised to BSM (British School of Motoring)
JA: Where is your husband? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: During the first lockdown BSM waived the franchise fee, which is approximately £250 per week. As he was forbidden to work by the government this seemed to be logical. During the second lockdown BSM suspended the fee so when he returned to work he was over £4000 in debt. They are deducting this money on a weekly basis to the tune of about £60! We would like to know if they are legally allowed to do this as it is difficult financially but also, we feel, grossly unfair. We live in Scotland so I contacted the Scottish Government but they said they could not comment, even though they imposed the ban on close contact during the pandemic. I also contacted ACAS but they would not assist either. Thank you in anticipation. Chris(tine) McCabe
JA: What steps has he taken so far?
Customer: As I have advised above
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: No
Submitted: 10 days ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  ReadyLaw replied 10 days ago.
Hi welcome to justanswer
Customer: replied 10 days ago.
Expert:  ReadyLaw replied 10 days ago.
I amCustomerone of the legal experts here. My goal is to provide you with the best experience possible and answer any questions which you may have about your current situation.
Expert:  ReadyLaw replied 10 days ago.
I may not respond immediately, this is because I may need some time to read what you shared above, type and respond to you.
Expert:  ReadyLaw replied 10 days ago.
If there is anything else you need, please let me know before I respond?
Customer: replied 10 days ago.
Okay no problem
Customer: replied 10 days ago.
I will wait for you reply, thank you
Expert:  ReadyLaw replied 10 days ago.

Kindly give me a minute I am presently reviewing your question to provide a written response here.

Expert:  ReadyLaw replied 10 days ago.

Hi again Chris, thanks for your patience and enquiry. This is most certainly a difficult one. I have checked whether there were any government guideline’s during the time as to how this issue was to be treated with. There does not seem to be any. As such, I cannot see where the government did say one way or the other whether this fee ought to have been cancelled.

Expert:  ReadyLaw replied 10 days ago.

If the government was silent in relation to this. The other recourse would be to have a look at the franchising agreement he would have signed to see whether any special provision as made there with respect to how situations such as these would be treated with. I suspect it too may be silent, particularly as Covid was not a crisis that before it happened would have been in anyone’s contemplation. Usually though contracts deal with issues to do with a contract being ‘frustrated’ due to unplanned for events. This is the specific clause you should be looking for.

Expert:  ReadyLaw replied 10 days ago.

Outside of either of the above, he would have to take the matter to court for it to make a declaration as to whether he would legally be required to pay in light of what happened. This is an untested area of the law. Because of the events, it is unlikely that there would be decided cases on how issues such as these would be treated with. As such, if he is of the view that he should not be legally required to pay, then it would be a matter for him to take to court.

Expert:  ReadyLaw replied 10 days ago.

As you can see, it is not at all very clear cut. It would require a lot of research into the likelihood success, and if he does decide to go to court he would require a solicitor to assist and getting a legal opinion. As it stands without reviewing the contract, the employer would by contract be legal empowered to demand this payment.

Expert:  ReadyLaw replied 10 days ago.

Can I clarify anything for you? I hope I have answered your query in a way that is simple and easy to understand. If anything remains unclear, I will be more than happy to clarify it for you. In the meantime, thank you once again for using our services.

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
Thank you for replying. I have looked over his franchise agreement and can see nothing which appertains to this situation. I have been given the telephone number if a local lawyer who apparently is well versed in this type of case I will phone him today and ask his advice. Thank you for your assistance Chris
Expert:  ReadyLaw replied 9 days ago.
Not to worry I do hope you get some positive feedback
Expert:  ReadyLaw replied 9 days ago.

Just a final note that if you would like to reconnect with me at a later date, simply add the nameCustomeras a favourite expert. You may also tag me in a question starting off with @Readylaw.

I look forward to helping you again soon.

Thanks again,