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advice required on overseas post contract withdrawal

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by djphillips1408, Jul 16, 2019.

  1. djphillips1408

    djphillips1408 New commenter

    OK I know I have to take the answers with a pinch of salt on here as it's all anonymous and don't think there are many employment law lawyers on here, but wanted to run my scenario past people just in case someone has been through something very similar, so here goes.

    30 April - offered post in Qatar
    1 May - offer letter comes through via UK based recruitment agency (usual conditions subject to references, medical etc) Letter states don't resign til we tell you
    late May - Realise have to resign at some point prior to May 31 deadline, so resign my post
    June - various back and forth about documents etc, medical passed, references fine
    7 July - Agency calls and says job has been pulled, but offer no reason as to why the post has been withdrawn. To this date still have not been given any reason why the offer has been pulled.

    Now I am not after sympathy, or tales of "you silly boy" for quitting without written contract, I just have one question.

    If the offer has been withdrawn for a reason not mentioned in the offer letter, then do we think I can chase them for salary for the notice period? (Caveat, union phone call today says I probably can). Just wanted second opinion.
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2019
  2. ViolaClef

    ViolaClef Lead commenter

    Well, if your union says you can, then presumably you will trust their advice (it’s one of the things you’re paying to be in a union for) and they will guide and advise you how to achieve this.
  3. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

    I would repost your query here-

    where you'll get a knowledgeable response about how the cookie crumbles in Qatar.
    I suspect you'll find working there is a fickle beast and you have little recourse, whatever the reason.
    I'm not sure your union would find this story relevant to their remit.
    It depends who the employer is I suppose.

    Have the agency offered to keep looking for things for you?
    If they haven't, that in itself is meaningful...

    Also,have you somehow checked that the job actually existed?
    Did it not occur to you as flaky that an agency would write "don't resign until we tell you"?
  4. djphillips1408

    djphillips1408 New commenter

    Not really that came directly from the School, well HR dept of the oil/gas company that runs the school. Not bothered about that anyway as just found email on June 29th from their HR dept welcoming to the company - so that's the magic bullet, they then pulled job 9 days later. In fairness it's not a fly by night set up, it's one of the biggest companies in the World. Now I have that email then realised its just a non contestable case. Getting them to pay up will be interesting though, might to have to send the bailiffs to their London offices.
  5. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

    And you are going to take them on?
    I don't think so.

    I know you are disappointed, but to pursue for losses is in many ways a destructive course. The thing to do is contact the highest up person you can identify, explain your readiness to work for them and ask them if they would like to place you in an alternative location.
    As it stands you have no job. Why spend your time and energy futilely chasing recourse (and burning bridges) when you can chase a different job?
  6. Cantwaittogo

    Cantwaittogo New commenter

    Would your current Head allow you to retract your notice?
  7. starlightexpress

    starlightexpress Occasional commenter

    I’d now focus attention on getting a job or work for September.
    jlishman2158 likes this.
  8. hs9981

    hs9981 Established commenter

    I look forward to watching it on 'can't pay, we'll take it away!'
    notreallyme75 and Mermaid7 like this.
  9. djphillips1408

    djphillips1408 New commenter

    - that's funny as I have literally just sent a message to someone saying exactly that. I know I am probably backing a losing horse here but gonna see it through, have taken one travel agent on before in small claims and they settled before it got there, so for the sake of a couple of hundred quid it's worth seeing what happens.
  10. djphillips1408

    djphillips1408 New commenter

    I like to think I can multi task and do both
  11. djphillips1408

    djphillips1408 New commenter

    Nope, school is fully staffed for September as it's a Grammar in Kent so find it easier to recruit. Ironically I helped to recruit my own replacement.
  12. Luvsskiing

    Luvsskiing Occasional commenter

    Unfortunately, ME schools tend to offer jobs out like sweeties in Spring, but the reality is, they don't know how many teachers they really actually need until July / early August, because they don't know how many children will register for the next year until July. That's when they then start handing out the bad news, as you've just found out. I've known this happen to at least a dozen friends over the years (a lot of my career was / is ME-based). You can tell people til they are blue in the face to take job offers and agencies for anywhere in the ME with a serious pinch of salt, but no one ever does! The best time to resign your UK job is when you are in the ME and have been working there for 6 weeks!! ME job contracts are worth less than used toilet paper.

    1) Was there a probationary period? This is key. You may find that either party had e.g. 30 days to change their mind, and even then, there might only be a week's notice. Were you given a contract with all this in? I hope you've read it.

    2) I would not bother suing anyone if it's solely ME based, but it sounds like they are a company with offices in London. Is it the same company, not a subsidiary? Are you sure you have the right people in London, who are commercially linked to the same people in the ME? If so, I agree with you - for the sake of a few hundred quid, it's worth taking them to the SCC. You sound experienced at doing this so no sweat. If you haven't already, I would also include a claim for all expenses e.g. renting out another property because yours has been rented etc so go for the full £10,000 SCC maximum. The other thing is, don't do this if you are the sort of person to stress and fret. It can be a lot of stress (it can also be a lot of fun) taking someone to court.

    3) You obviously know, but you will not find it difficult to find supply work in Kent if you want to, unless you have seriously upset everyone in the county somehow. Write directly to schools if in a shortage subject. You don't need an agency if you are in a shortage subject.

    4) If you have made plans to go to go abroad, you have a seriously once in a lifetime wonderful opportunity now, especially if money isn't your prime motivator. There still are jobs to be had - Vietnam, Indonesia, China etc. There was even a great job advertised in Burma a few weeks back - I would love to have had that one. Or just go and do the hippy thing for six months in India (take the family if there is one). I really hope you don't just slip back into UK working. Go find the sun!

    All the best. Post the SCC outcome, for the nosey ones amongst us (probably the Working Abroad forum is best).
  13. starlightexpress

    starlightexpress Occasional commenter

    Work could be any work;
    Job meaning role.
    You might not be able to get a new role but might be able to get some sort of work to tide you over.

    Wish you the best.

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