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Compromise Agreement changed?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Kelloggs, Dec 14, 2011.

  1. Kelloggs

    Kelloggs New commenter

    I resigned last week and accepted a compromise agreement - I was sent an e-mail from my union rep which outlined what it would consist of. However, today I have received an e-mail which basically states that it is short by a month's salary which I was promised. I have e-mailed back and queried this, but I just wondered if this was normal, or if there has possibly been another error made?
     
  2. Gardening Leaves

    Gardening Leaves New commenter

    A compromise agreement is just that: a compromise to enable both you and the employer to move on.
    Nothing should be imposed upon you. You should be given full sight of the draft before you are asked to sign it and have input into an agreed reference, which is usually part of the agreement.
    You are also required in law to be given independent legal advice on what exactly you are signing and its implications. Sometimes union advisers are qualified to give this. If so, they will have specific insurance and will offer something like a certificate to go with the CA to say you have received the advice.
    If you were promised something that is not being delivered, don't feel you have to accept it. Equally, make sure you have full input into the agreed reference. The employer is not allowed to deviate from it by one word, once it has been signed. My Head was a complete t/t and attempted to propose an agreed reference that was derogatory and factually inaccurate. We rejected it and wrote our own - me and the union rep between us.
    All things are possible!
     
  3. Kelloggs

    Kelloggs New commenter

    Thank you - no mention has been made about legal advice etc - I was told by the union that if I resign I would be given pay until the end of my notice period which is the end of April, which was what was offered. Now they have offered me much less than this - I have already sent a message regarding the reference as it is factually incorrect as issues that they have said that exist were commented on in my obs as being positive! This is a mess and I am so fed up with it all! The union have turned out to be absolutely appalling.
     
  4. Gardening Leaves

    Gardening Leaves New commenter

    Somewhere in the back of my mind, I have a feeling that you are entitled to independent legal advice, when a CA is being proposed, paid for by your employer. I may be wrong, but I'll try to find out for you.
    Does this ring a bell with anyone else?
    Union appalling? Now where have I heard that before? Come on unions - fight your corner!! Why is everyone making a judgment of 'Inadequate' about you?
     
  5. Gardening Leaves

    Gardening Leaves New commenter

    I found this on the website www.armchairadvice.co.uk. It might arm you with information to ask the right questions of your union:
    <h1>Compromise Agreements</h1> Sometimes relationships between employers and employees break down irretrievably and ending the employment seems to be the only solution. Compromise agreements are legal documents that can be used in the case of dismissal or redundancy generally offering a payment in return for agreeing to certain conditions.

    Many employers are turning to compromise agreements in order to speed up the process of the 'parting of the ways' and to ensure that there is a clean break with no further repercussions from former employees. Their overall purpose is to settle a dispute over a dismissal or sometimes to prevent any possibility of further claims following redundancy.
    • Compromise agreements must be agreed upon and signed by both you and your employer following the termination of your employment. The agreed package is a 'full and final' settlement of any claims you may have against your employer'.
    • Because a compromise agreement is a legal document and must be signed by both parties, a solicitor must be involved. The solicitor should advise you regarding the terms and whether the amount of compensation being offered is appropriate. Follow this link to find details of local solicitors with expertise in Employment Law.
    • The solicitor must also sign to say that they have ensured you fully understand all elements of the agreement you are signing. Your employer will offer a specified sum of money for legal fees. If it turns out that the complications of your case require more time, your solicitor may be able to negotiate an increase in the fee as part of the compromise agreement
    • A compromise agreement will generally include: <ul style="font-size:90%;list-style-type:disc;">
    • Details of the compensation - this usually consists of a payment which is often tax free
    • Any assurances given by the employer
    • The reference which will be given to prospective employers
    • The assurances given by the employee, usually including confidentiality
    • The acceptance of all terms by the employee and an assurance that legal action will not be pursued in the future.
    [*] Compromise agreements are written so that once you have signed you will not be able to bring a claim against your employer for anything at all. Both sides usually agree to a clause in the agreement guaranteeing confidentiality.[*] If you are not happy with the compromise agreement that has been offered, you do not need to sign it. You may continue to negotiate through your solicitor until an agreement is reached.[/LIST] If negotiations break down without agreement, then you are free to pursue the case as you see fit. However this could mean that your employer might refuse to pay you the compensation package and you will need to consider taking the case to an Employment Tribunal for settlement. This is a decision which requires careful consideration and your solicitor will advise you on the implications.
     
  6. Kelloggs

    Kelloggs New commenter

    Thank you - now my union has not mentioned anything about any advice - nor have I been given anything to sign at all! Can you please advise what you think this means?:


    You will receive three months salary, tax free, (February, March and April)
     
  7. Your employment will cease on 31January.
     
  8. Gardening Leaves

    Gardening Leaves New commenter

    Oooh! Wary wary of the word'advise'!! Can't do that but can give an opinion for you to check with someone qualified!! [​IMG]
    Will just add that 'tax free' means just that: your normal GROSS salary is paid to you as severance pay, not your usual net, so it works out at more than 3 months worth of your usual cash-in-hand salary, if you see what I mean! (I ended up with the equivalent of 8 months-worth of my usual net salary.)
     
  9. Kelloggs

    Kelloggs New commenter

    Mmm, not according to the NUT it doesn't! They say it is a tax free lump sum and my school said it was supposed to be 3 months net pay - either way it isn't 3 months net pay as it is short, and I understood it to mean what you said! Is there any way I can get this clarified for certain? I feel I am being led a merry dance here!
     
  10. Gardening Leaves

    Gardening Leaves New commenter

    Hmmm I suppose the devil is in the detail. If they say they will gI've you a tax free lump sum, equivalent to 3 months' salary, that's not the same as offering 3 months tax free salary. This is where you union should be negotiating hard for you.

    Remember, a CA is not supposed to be something imposed on you. In accepting it you sign away rights to take action. It's important that you get a fair deal to compensate for that.
     
  11. Kelloggs

    Kelloggs New commenter

    There is no mention of the word equivalent - I spoke with my rep tonight who said it is definitely gross pay and she will get it sorted for me. I am just so stressed out with all of this - particularly as my HT admitted that I am not a bad teacher, I just didn't fit into that particular setting - so to me that means that all the competency threats and informal action should not have happened.
     
  12. kelloggs - you should not have gone through all this. appalling management skills by your HT. Good luck with it all.
     
  13. neli

    neli Occasional commenter

    ' If it's gross pay, then you will have no tax, national insurance or
    pension contributions for those months. Perhaps your union should have
    told you that'.
    Phone the job centre and sign on and they will pay these for you.
    You MUST have legal representation to sign a CA and the Union should provide this, sign nothing until you have been assigned and spoken to a solicitor.
    Oh, and it should be gross pay x
     
  14. Kelloggs

    Kelloggs New commenter

    This is what I have been arguing - so far the school are refusing to pay not only the gross pay, but even less than the net pay! They have rounded it down by almost £150 if it is net pay, and by almost £3k if gross pay. My union rep (local) is not happy and is dealing with it - she said that it was agreed by SPS before she offered it to me, and they have now come up with an alternative figure. The school say it is because I don't need to leave - when I could not stay there as it was making me very ill - they were making my life hell.
     
  15. neli

    neli Occasional commenter

    The Schoolis talking Rot and your Union Rep. should have refered you to the regional office who will sort this mess out. Then they should pass it to a solicitor to ensure everything is ok with you and that you are clear in exactly what you are signing.
    Do not sign anything until this has been done x

     
  16. Kelloggs

    Kelloggs New commenter

    The Regional office say that it is up to the school to decide what to pay so they don't have to give me gross pay at all - I don't know where the amounts come from? It is to the end of my notice period which would be the 30 April if I were to work my notice.
     

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