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Can the school invoice me?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by JodiP, Jun 18, 2019.

  1. JodiP

    JodiP New commenter

    I’m currently signed off work until the end of term with WRS due to bullying. I have a new job for September.

    I got sent an email saying they had referred me to OH. No mention of any appointment, just the referral. Today, I got an email saying I didn’t attend an OH appointment yesterday and am being invoiced for the cost. £425!

    I read through his email again. No reference to an appointment anywhere apart from he had made a referral. The title of the email is ‘absence.’ It is a long email chain. At the bottom at the end of all the emails there is a little box with the attachment. Nowhere did the email indicate there was a letter or an appointment anywhere or that an appointment had actually been made. I have not received a letter in the post either.

    I have spoken to the union and they are going to discuss all of the issues with the school with me face to face.

    In the meantime, can anyone offer me advice for my email reply please? I don’t believe it’s reasonable to ask me to pay £425 for an appointment I was unaware of.
  2. CWadd

    CWadd Star commenter

    Oh crumbs.

    If the school did not inform you, and no letter/phone call came through either, billing you does seem wrong.

    But if it was the attachment on the chain and you didn't check it...difficult.

    However, all contact should be through the union. And an OH appt should come as a direct letter from them through the post. Someone has messed up.

    But...you're off sick this isn't going to help, so forward all of this to your Union.
  3. UpperPayShelf

    UpperPayShelf New commenter

    Hope you get this sorted. Dreadful carry on. :eek:
    I am poorly at the moment and I have to check appointments, days, times... I'm not so sharp.
    I also await OH contacting me and would hope it's clear.
    Something to be aware of....thank you for pointing out that although I'm ill with WRS, they could send me a whopping bill of I'm not up to working out their cryptic emails! :(
    I'm sure your union will help you.
    agathamorse likes this.
  4. JodiP

    JodiP New commenter

    My argument is why would I check an email chain when the email doesn’t indicate anywhere there was an attachment, a letter or an appointment. I didn’t look for an attachment as I didn’t know there was one.
  5. Pomza

    Pomza Star commenter

    Write and explain you were unaware an appointment had been booked and that you are not prepared to pay. If you haven’t been contacted directly by phone or letter by OH, you are in a strong position.

    If currently signed off sick, you are under no obligation to be checking your work emails.
  6. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    All the advice is not to open attachments unless you know what they are, anyway, and if it's long email chain that you've been forwarded at the end, it's not usually clear when the attachment got added.

    I think you do as Pomza suggests, and don't even mention that you have now noticed the attachment. Then if they check to see that they had sent you the information, they may realise that there's no indication in the email they sent you.
  7. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    If you stop looking at work emails, you won't know you have been referred and you won't know you have been invoiced.
    Speak to your union and then stop reading anything to do with work.
    You are signed off until the end of term and have a new post to go to. They are unlikely to chase you for the money and there is nothing else you need to do work wise.
    Relax and get well.
  8. mathsman

    mathsman Occasional commenter

    They can invoice you - but that doesn't mean that they were right to do so
    border_walker and pepper5 like this.
  9. Piscean1

    Piscean1 Senior commenter

    I imagine they'd struggle to get you to pay. If I'd made somebody an appointment that was going to cost over £400, I'd be damn sure to make sure they knew about it. Lesson learned for them hopefully.
  10. sidekick125

    sidekick125 New commenter

    I was under the impression that when you were ill, you were under not to be contacted by the employer? So you should not have had to check your emails anyway?
  11. cheesypop

    cheesypop Senior commenter

    Did you ask for the OH appointment?
    Were you told in advance that there was a cost to the appointment that you would have to pay if you did not attend?

    If the answer to either of the above is no then I don’t think you can be made to pay. You haven’t entered into any kind of an agreement, or contract, with them to say this.
    If someone came round to your house and did work in your garden without you asking them to, or without you agreeing a payment, then they couldn’t in law expect payment for that work. That’s why we have contracts. You didn’t enter into a contract to attend that OH appointment and therefore you can’t be charged for not going.
    agathamorse likes this.
  12. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    A common but incorrect belief on these forums.
    caterpillartobutterfly and Pomza like this.
  13. Pomza

    Pomza Star commenter

    People do like that particular gem...

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