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ARB or not to ARB

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by baitranger, Jan 31, 2012.

  1. baitranger

    baitranger Occasional commenter


    If your doctor thinks you need more time off, why not take it? The time off will count towards your pension.
    That sounds like a good reason, but when you are feeling better, you may change your mind. Why not take as much time as you need to recover?
    I think your pension will be reduced to about 80% of of your 25 years if you retire at 55 but check on the Teachers' Pensions website.
    Perhaps the important question is whether you can afford to take ARB and whether you need the additional amount you would get if you were able to get ill-health retirement.


     
  2. Thank you for the advice everyone. My Union is pretty useless and I only joined them at the end of last year (long story). I just feel like giving up. There seems to be no way out for me.
     
  3. Hang in there. If only until you feel well enough to consider what your options are and make reasoned decisions. Take time off sick if necessary. I was rarely absent from work until I became ill last year. I needed to be away from the work place to get better and then think straight.
     
  4. phatsals

    phatsals Occasional commenter

    I am very sorry to read of your troubles. Please don't resign just yet and stay off on the sick as you are clearly unwell. Make sure your notes say 'Work Related Stress' as your employer will have to tread very carefully.
    If, as you seem certain, you will be exited from your post on your return, or you will resign, it seems in your best interests to delay the final decision for as long as possible. As has already been stated, your absence will still attract full pension credits for up to a year. You must be sure to tell your employer that you intend to return 'as soon as you are well'.
    Do not agree to anything and keep detailed notes in diary form of all events. Any paperwork you have from school be sure to keep and any conversations you have make notes on. If you get a home visit ask for everything to be confirmed in writing which includes your notes, ie if they don't send you minutes, make your own and send them a copy. Again always be sure to say you intend to return as soon as you are well enough.
    Do not be bullied into returning to work or into leaving. Your first priority is your health as without that it is almost impossible to think clearly. Take your time, and take as much of it as you need.
     
  5. All the above is excellent advice. Do not be rushed into anything. Remember that you are entitled to 6 months off at full pay and 6 months at half pay. Use all this if you need to.
    Having said that I took ARB at the age of 56 having been bullied out of a job and it was the best thing I ever did. I now do casual supply work which I really love, it has given me back my faith in myself. I no longer have to get involved in any politics of any school I go to. No meetings, no parents hassling about stuff, no displays, no assemblies or performances etc.
    Good luck whatever you decide. But don't rush it.
     
  6. Thank you RoseAngel. I dont think I will get 6 months full pay and will be fast-tracked out. I was off for a very long time 4 years ago when I had cancer. I had a sickness meeting then before retruning to work. I have only been off 4 weeks so far but understand the school wants to start ill health dismissal which they now fast track.
     
  7. snowstorm

    snowstorm New commenter

    If you've had cancer you are covered by the Equality Act 2010 even if in remission.
    They can't dismiss you so easily; certainly not 'fast-track' you.
    do seek Union/ legal advice urgently (if you havent done so already)
     
  8. But my ill-health now is for a different illness- not the cancer.
     
  9. snowstorm

    snowstorm New commenter

    Do seek advice on this. The Equalities Human Rights Commison are very helpful and will give you free advice.
     
  10. phatsals

    phatsals Occasional commenter

    You cannot be fast-tracked so easily. You are finding it very difficult to think clearly at present as you really are unwell. You are fully entitled to 6 months full and 6 months hialf pay as your previous ill health was in a different financial year and they are not linked by time.
    My heart goes out to you, please don't make any decisions right now apart from how best to get well. Your GP will fully support you and your employer is treading on very dangerous ground. To be exited you would have to be deemed as unlikely to every return to work, after such a short absence it would be impssible to make such a judgement.
    Have you got a copy of your schools Dismissal Policy? Try to get a copy of it if you can as it should outline what procedures are in place for Ill Health. You must keep providing them with absence notes and continue to state you will return 'as soon as you are well'.
    Forcing you to resign etc is potentially Constructive Dismissal, if they exit you from your employment without following their own Dismissal procedures it is Unfair Dismissal. Both of these can go to Industrial Tribunal which can cost them a great deal of money.
    If you don't have access to a Union solicitor, contract Legal Aid by phone. They will be able to provide you with good advice. The first of which will be to stay off work until you are well.
    Please, please don't make any rash decisions. You have only been off a few weeks and you need a lot more time, particularly as your husband is also unwell.

     
  11. Thank you phatsals

    I was told that schools are now dismissing teachers before the expiry of the 100 days full pay/100 days half pay on ill health capability.
    The 200 days is not an automatic right.

    If anyone knows I would be most grateful.
     
  12. phatsals

    phatsals Occasional commenter

    Told by whom? It would seem to depend on circumstance and the ability to put up a fight, You really are not well enought to make any decisions, you need time and you are far, far away from nearing your entitlement.
    Your union must be your support, but please do as I say and diarise all events/conversations. Your sick entitlement is in the Burgundy Book, although you are quite right an employer may decide to act before that time is up. However in the case of work related stress they can't be seen to aggravate the situation as it would provide evidence to an Industrial Tribunal.
    As you are prepared to leave in the long run, make this last as long as you can. If you resign you will receive no pay whatsoever and you will not be entitled to any Unemployment benefit for up to 6 months. Take your time, keep saying you will return 'when you are well' and collect your evidence.
    It is in the interest of your employer to push you out and get someone else cheaper in. They may well offer you a compromise agreement to go sooner rather than later, but if you resign you will get nothing.
     
  13. Thank you Phatsals.
    If I apply for IHR would it be better to leave that as late as possible?
    I was told the 200 day thing doesnt necessarily apply by an online solicitor.
    I am too scared to go any meetings with the HT in school and feel too depressed to do so anyway.
     
  14. phatsals

    phatsals Occasional commenter

    Ignore the on line solicitor and yes, leave all applications as long as possible. Unfortunately for IHR it very often takes so long that ARB becomes the only option, after a year when sick pay runs out there is no income. It takes deep pockets and nerves of steel to go for IHR but it's always worth a try.
    Meanwhile, keep seeing your doc, send in the notes, keep your notes and commit to nothing. Do not attend any meetings in school saying you are not well enough. You may allow a visit to your home if you are up to it, but have someone present.
    My suspicion is that you will be offered a Compromise Agreement, don't agree at first saying you intend to return as soon as you are well. Eventually you can agree, but only if it fits in with you.
    Do not make any decisions in your present frame of mind.
     
  15. Thank you so much for your support Phatsal. I cannot believe what is happening to me after working 7 days a week and on occasions through the night. How can anyone treat someone like me so badly.I have done nothing but give my all.
     
  16. phatsals

    phatsals Occasional commenter

    Regrettably many of us are treated the same. It is for exactly that reason that you do nothing to accommodate them now. No agreement, no resignation, no meetings until or unless you are well enough.
    Stay home, stay safe and get well. There is a lot of support available on this site but you do need your union to negotiate for you. They are there to provide a buffer. Don't have any meetings on your own ever and take notes of any and all contact you have from the employer.

     
  17. Yes I was dismissed after ten months.
     
  18. rosievoice

    rosievoice Star commenter

    The period of sick leave is determined by how long you have been teaching. I taught for over twenty years, and was off sick on full pay for 100 days (this is calculated as 100 work days, not weekends, not holidays) and then on half pay for 100 days.
    Keep sending in "sick notes" and follow the school's sickness policy, eg. visit occy health, (OH are there for YOU) and don't rush into making a decision you may later regret because you aren't well enough yet .
    If you still have a pulse, you will not get IHR based on stress and depression. Even if your union is as useless as mine was, they should be able to advise you of your rights and responsibilities.
    Good luck, take good care of yourself and keep us posted on here.
     
  19. rosievoice

    rosievoice Star commenter

    Forgot to mention... if your head, as mine did, tries to cajole you in for meetings, bat him away and reply that you would be delighted to attend when your health permits it. (Which mine was <u>never</u> going to do!)
    You should not be harassed when off sick.
     
  20. Thank you very much rosevoice.
    It helps to know that I have support during a period of my working life that I thought I would be enjoying rather than fearing.
     

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