First Tuesday Q&A

The claimant was dismissed by reason of gross misconduct and in particular.

What are we exposed to if we impose pay cuts without seeking an express agreement?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 03/05/2011 Any such change will amount to a variation of your employee’s terms and conditions of employment. Unless the contract of employment allows you to vary the terms then you must obtain the employee's consent to do this. Imposing the change without consent (express or implied) will be a breach of contr...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Unfair Dismissal Contracts of Employment Pay and Conditions of Employment

Under TUPE, can you:

  1. introduce a smart dress code to transferring staff?
  2. generally introduce your policies/procedures to transferring staff?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 05/04/2011 This question involves the permissibility of variations to the employment terms of transferring staff. In this case, this will depend upon whether the new employer (transferee) intends to amend the contractual provisions of incoming employees' employment contracts, or to simply set out a non-contra...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Contracts of Employment Transfer of Undertaking (TUPE) Policies and Procedures

If an employee requests to continue working beyond the normal retirement age of 65, can the employer refuse this request? If so, how can it be done without exposing the Company to a discrimination claim?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 05/04/2011 From your question, it sounds as though you have already kick started the retirement procedure and issued your employee with notice of his/her intended retirement date and his /her right to request working beyond 65. If so, and if this notice has been issued before tomorrow, 6 April 2011 and in acc...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Discrimination and Equality Contracts of Employment

We have recently discovered that we’ve been overpaying a number of our employees. What's the legal position? Can the Company get the money back from them?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 01/03/2011 If the employees are still working for you, the first and most obvious avenue to consider is recovering the overpayments from their earnings. Making deductions from employees’ wages is unlawful under the Employment Rights (NI) Order 1996 unless authorised by statute or the employee’s contract or wh...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Contracts of Employment Pay and Conditions of Employment

Our employer would like to introduce some new policies and procedures for our employees. Are there any issues with just implementing these without consultation?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 01/02/2011 If you do not intend the policies to be in the employee contracts (and thereby contractually binding) then, from a strict legal perspective, you can just put the procedures into force. However, it may be appropriate to make some policies contractual, for example those relating to pay, expenses, hou...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Contracts of Employment Policies and Procedures

Our employees have a provision in their contracts of employment stating that they must be present at work the day before and the day after a bank/public holiday in order to receive pay for the holiday. Is this still legal?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 01/02/2011 As above, employees have a statutory right to a minimum of 5.6 weeks paid annual leave under the WTR BUT do not have an automatic entitlement to public/bank holidays. Whether a worker can be required to work on a public holiday is a matter for the contract. Therefore, the condition outlined above i...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Contracts of Employment Working Time and Leave

We had two employees who could not get to and ‘from’ work because of the bad weather.

One said she was snowed in and could not get out of her house (which is in the country up an untreated road). The other was travelling back from Dublin after work and the work van was slipping all over the road. After three hours of not going very far the employee booked into a hotel for the night.

What are my responsibilities as an employer in these situations?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 07/12/2010 As a rule of thumb an employer's obligation to pay arises where the employee is willing and able to perform work. If an employee cannot get to work or they cannot carry out their work, strictly speaking you do not have an obligation to pay these employees. Having said that, many of our clients tend...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Contracts of Employment Policies and Procedures Pay and Conditions of Employment

When does it become acceptable [timeframe] to align salaries, working hours etc after a TUPE Transfer so that all workers are treated to the same? We have recently had a transfer and there are members of staff working all different times on different rates. Other staff working longer hours are getting very aggrieved about this to the point where I can see it becoming a formal complaint in the near future.

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 05/10/2010 The short answer is never! Post-transfer harmonisation of terms and conditions of employment will almost always be because of the transfer itself and will, therefore, not amount to a permitted change under TUPE, being an economic, technical or organisational (ETO) reason connected with the transfer...

With seasonal working arrangements or other intermittent employment is there a recognised period of time between employment periods that would constitute a break in service. Are there mitigating factors to take into account on this?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 03/08/2010 This question is a good example of a specific follow-on from last month’s more general question on continuous employment. To recap, employment is presumed to be continuous from the contract start date and will generally end on termination. However certain circumstances may bring about a break in co...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Contracts of Employment A-Typical Working