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Are they within their rights?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by fabulous1, Apr 17, 2012.

  1. Hi everyone,

    I am awaiting upon a compromise agreement, of which I still don't know the terms and conditions.
    All I know is it seems to be taking an age to sort out! I've been off work with work related stress since
    January and during this time have diligently sent in doctors notes- I forwarded a note for 6 weeks
    just before the Easter Hols. For the past couple of weeks I have been blissfully unaware that the school have
    informed payroll that I am no longer to get paid (my last pay date was march 25th apparently- though
    noone saw fit to inform me of this) I am now in a bit of a tiz as I'm not sure how I'm supposed to pay this
    months bills. I haven't signed anything yet, nor has a date been agreed for the CA to take effect.
    . Can they do this???? I think I'm more upset that after 18 years in teaching my livelihood can just
    be cut off without me knowing anything about it
  2. chocolateworshipper

    chocolateworshipper Occasional commenter

    Although I am no expert, I cannot believe that they cannot just stop paying you without any communication about it. If you still belong to a union, get straight on the phone to them. Otherwise, the Citizens Advice Bureau are very helpful.
  3. Gardening Leaves

    Gardening Leaves New commenter

    No, they most certainly are not allowed to do this and are in breach of 1996 Employment Rights Act ("unlawful deduction of earnings"). You need to let your union or lawyer know immediately.
  4. frustum

    frustum Lead commenter

    Contact your union.
    Also contact payroll and explain the situation to them. Maybe they'll be willing to override the school pending the school providing any evidence that you should not be paid.
    It may be worth, as a precautionary measure, talking to your bank about a temporary overdraft.
  5. People don't usually do any work when they are sick, because they are, you know, sick. This is why sick pay exists, and statutory sick pay.

    They can't just cut you off no, especially without any offer of explanation and they still can't if that explanation turns out to be that you are off ill. It's an unlawful deduction from your wage, that's correct. Contact your union, a regional representative, not your school rep.

    Don't expect to have a job come September though, I think the compromise agreement that you mention will still end up coming into force and you will have to leave.
  6. Until you sign the CA, you work there and you are entitled to be paid. Contact your union and let them know. Another reason why the whole thing is illegal, btw, is that the CA will specify your leaving day so until you sign it the school cannot know the last date they will have to pay you.
    Another thing is that the CA is called so because it contains a compromise between you and the school. This means it will have to be negotiated, it may go back and forth a few times so there is no way you can't know what it contains. Of course this also depends on how strong a position you are in and what your leverage is.
  7. FollyFairy

    FollyFairy Occasional commenter

    As others have said, no they cannot do this! If you have not been dismissed (and if you had been, I think you would know about it!) then you are still entitled to be paid. How do you know that payroll have been informed? Have you got a letter from them? Their tactics are verging of bullying and intimidation! I do hope you are in a union and have already contacted them!
  8. Thanks for your support!!!
    Though I suspect that 'irritable commie' is just that- irritable! I can't say too much- Apparently the date on
    my CA is 31st March so they are saying that any salary I get from that date will affect the terms
    of my agreement. I think I'm more upset that no one let me know what was happening- I have not seen
    the agreement yet and had no idea it was going to go into effect on that day.To be honest, I have not found my union
    very effective- unreturned phone calls; unanswered emails- Okay- I'm sure they've got alot to deal with but to me this is personal and, ultimately, if my finances are affected, then it affects my family too.
  9. Surely the CA only kicks in when it's been agreed and signed? Until then your terms and conditions of service remain as per your contract I'd have thought (I'm no expert though!). What does your Union say about it?
    What a horrible situation for you to be in though - all the best of luck that it gets sorted out quickly.
  10. Crowbob

    Crowbob Senior commenter

    Have you received legal advice on the TERMS of this agreement? If not, and it is a true compromise agreement, your employers are in breach of the ERA1996, s.203.You need to get much more forceful with your union.

  11. Fabulous1
    So the SLT are not claiming that you have now used up your full entitlement to sick leave (X days on full and then X days on half pay) in the current leave year, but that they are stopping your pay becasue they expect you to sign a CA.
    If so, then i believe the school is getting itself into further trouble and you should ahve a strong case for claiming all the associated costs arising from their action. Bank charges penalites etc.
    Contact the union urgently. Your case should now be their priority.
    Contact the legal helpline if you have legal protection with your household insurance
    I wouldn't be surprised if the legal advice is something like this. Email the school giving them formal notice that you will be claiming for all losses arising from their failure to pay your salary in accordance wiht the contrac tof employment. Remind the school that even if a CA is successfully negotiated, it may take some time and during that period you expect the school to meet fully its contractual obligations.

  12. Surely if you haven't seen it, let alone signed it, then it is not an agreement in any sense of the word and in fact it does not exist.
  13. AlwaysAdaptable

    AlwaysAdaptable New commenter

    Just out of interest, in the event of CA and agreed reference drawn up but not signed. Can a teacher still register with an agency and the reference would be favourable. Or even do supply while waiting for settlement. By the way I am not taking a CA, at times I wish I was but the way things are going I might not survive until the end of the year. My days are numbered I know.
  14. Gardening Leaves

    Gardening Leaves New commenter

    Quite so. You should have had input into the CA and agreed the wording of any reference that is part of it. I wrote my own reference, when the Head's first attempt was so defamatory and inaccurate. As crowbob has already pointed out, under section 203 of the Employment Rights Act 1996, you MUST have independent legal advice from a lawyer or someone appropriately qualified to give such advice (e.g. a specially trained union officer). Without this, any CA will be held to be invalid in a tribunal and you cannot be restricted to its terms. Your union should be pro-actively organising this WITH you (not for you).
    It is very important to get proper legal advice because a CA compromises your rights to (among other things, depending on the terms) take your employer to tribunal for unfair dismissal, or discrimination.
  15. Crowbob

    Crowbob Senior commenter

    I wonder whether we are missing some crucial piece of information as, if it is as it first appears, it is an utterly bizarre situation....
  16. Until the CA is signed, you work
    for the school with which the agreement is being negotiated and you are being paid by them, so you
    cannot take up work elsewhere.
    Hm...good point...
  17. AlwaysAdaptable

    AlwaysAdaptable New commenter

    Yes there is some information missing but I am too much of a coward to write about it on these forums. Thanks Spool for clearing my query.
  18. Torey

    Torey Occasional commenter

    I think it is sensible not to include too much information. Some people say so much they could easily be identified.
  19. Crowbob

    Crowbob Senior commenter

    Sorry, I was referring to the OP and not your issue :)
  20. Oh dear, I seem to have stirred up a hornets nest! I assure you, you are not missing an essential piece of information
    though, as Torey says, I think its wise not to reveal too much on here. I have genuinely, not seen the terms of the agreement yet. I tried to contact the union as matter of urgency today again, but no reply! Unfortunately, I do not have legal cover on my home insurance but am going to contact CAB. I do feel let down by my union- there is a distinct lack of communication. I accept that my days are numbered at school, but how can people possibly stop your pay without you being informed?

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