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First Tuesday Q and A

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Features

If employees have been working remotely during the pandemic, can they argue that, through custom and practice, they are entitled to work from home on a permanent basis?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 05/10/2021 Any contract may be amended at any time either in accordance with the terms of the contract itself or with the agreement of all the parties to the contract. Case law concerning employment contracts has demonstrated the court's willingness to protect employees from employers who may seek to abuse th...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Contracts of Employment Coronavirus/Covid-19
Features

Is a non-executive director eligible for statutory sick pay?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 05/10/2021 There are certain criteria that must be satisfied in order to be eligible for statutory sick pay (SSP). However, when it comes to non-executive directors, the requirement for the individual to be an 'employee' is likely to be the most immediately relevant. A person appointed as a director of a comp...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Sickness and Absence Pay and Conditions of Employment
Features

If an employment contract is only provided to an employee a few months after employment started, what issues does this give rise to?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 05/10/2021 One of the main issues arising from a delay to provide a written contract is the uncertainty around terms. There is no legal requirement for any employee to have a written contract of employment. However, employers are required by article 33 of the Employment Rights (Northern Ireland) Order 1996 to...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Contracts of Employment
Features

Do employment tribunals have jurisdiction to hear money claims made by a former employee for underpaid employer pension contributions?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 05/10/2021 The EAT in Somerset County Council v Chambers UKEAT/0417/12 confirmed that pension contributions are excluded from the definition of “wages”. Therefore, a claim for underpaid employer pension contributions would most likely be brought as a breach of contract claim. The claimant can choose to bring ...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Pensions Tribunal Practice Procedures and Jurisdictional Issues
Features

Can an employer refuse a request from an unsuccessful job applicant to delete any of their data in its possession as it may be necessary for the defence of legal claims?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 07/09/2021 An employer’s data protection obligations extend to job applicants in relation to retention and erasure of personal data. As a matter of good practice, employers should seek consent from applicants at the outset in relation to their application kept on file in case of future vacancies. At this poin...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Data Protection and Freedom of Information Act
Features

Can we bring a claim against a former employee who has damaged the company’s reputation post-employment?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 07/09/2021 Generally, the employer’s rights against the former employee would be limited to any contractual obligation which may have been breached. For example, if there is an express obligation on the former employee not to hold themselves out as an employee, the above situation will amount to a breach of t...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Disciplinary and Grievance Issues
Features

Where electronic payslips are provided, can we charge a reasonable fee for providing a paper payslip if an employee insists on this?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 06/09/2021 Deductions from wages are only permitted where required or authorise under statute or the contract of employment or where the worker has previously given express written consent. Whilst there is no specific rule preventing an employer from charging an employee for a paper payslip, there is also no ...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Pay and Conditions of Employment
Features

Can we investigate allegations of bullying where the employee concerned does not wish to raise a grievance?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 06/09/2021 If an employer has legitimate concerns about bullying in the workplace, it should investigate the matter even if the employee who has made the allegation does not wish to co-operate with the investigation. Consequences for an employer who fails to carry out investigations into bullying can be signi...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Disciplinary and Grievance Issues
Features

Would it be lawful for a contract of employment to make payment of salary conditional upon the employee fulfilling their obligations and duties?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 03/08/2021 There is a duty to pay wages when an employee is ready, willing and able to work. This is the case irrespective of whether there is work for them to do or not. Case law states that work and wages go hand-in-hand. In short, if the employer declines to pay, the worker need not work. If the worker dec...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Contracts of Employment
Features

If A Company Based In NI Is Employing Someone Who Will Be Based In England, Should The Governing Law Of The Employment Contract be the Law Of England Or NI?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 03/08/2021 The parties to the employment contract are free to choose the law that will govern the contract. However, the parties’ choice of governing law will not displace the "mandatory rules" that would have applied in the absence of choice. Mandatory rules cover issues such as notice rights, method of term...