Employment

Employment

In many ways, work defines our lives.  We spend as much if not more time with our bosses and colleagues as we do with those we love.  If our employment relationship turns sour, resulting in a dispute or grievance, it is important to know who you can turn to for support.

 

At Nalders Solicitors, we have been supporting employees in Cornwall for decades.  During that time, we have grown as a firm and kept pace with the changing employment environment.  As a result, we are one of the most trusted law firms in the region, with a dedicated employment law team ready to help you when you need it most.

 

Our employment law services

We offer a full range of employment law services to employees (and employers), including;

  • Employment contract negotiation
  • Redundancy
  • Unfair dismissal
  • Discrimination
  • Settlement Agreements
  • Whistleblowing

 

Our solicitors have an in-depth understanding of all areas of employment law and, crucially, how each inter-relate.  When you instruct us, you can be assured of fast, friendly, expert service at a competitive rate. We represent clients through all stages of employment disputes and, if needed, all the way to the Supreme Court.

 

Why choose us?

Making a decision to talk to a solicitor about an employment matter takes a lot of courage.  When talking to us, you can trust that we will treat your matter in the strictest confidence.  We will take the time to listen to your situation and provide legal advice that takes into account your unique employment situation and the outcome you desire.

 

Our firm believes in taking an innovative approach with legal matters, focusing on achieving the right outcome and protecting your best interests.  If you have an employment law issue, come in and see us so we can demonstrate to you why we are the preferred law firm in the West Country and beyond.

 

To make an appointment with one of our employment law team please fill in our contact form, or phone our Truro office on 01872 241414.

Discrimination

The Equality Act 2010 aims to protect individuals from discrimination, particularly in the workplace.  However, there are times when the principles of the Act are contravened, either deliberately or by accident.  If you believe you are a victim of discrimination, please contact us for legal advice and support.

 

The Equality Act 2010

Under the Act, an employee cannot be discriminated against on the basis of one or more of the nine protected characteristics:

 

  1. Age
  2. Disability
  3. Gender reassignment
  4. Marriage and civil partnership
  5. Pregnancy and maternity
  6. Race
  7. Religion or belief
  8. Sex
  9. Sexual orientation

 

Discrimination can be either direct or indirect.

 

Indirect discrimination can occur when an action, decision or employment policy which is not intended to treat anyone less favourably, can nonetheless disadvantage a group of people with a protected characteristic when out into practice. For example, say perhaps you work for a restaurant which requires all staff members to taste new items off the menu every week at a non-negotiable time during normal working hours.  Whilst this policy may not cause problems for the majority of staff, it could indirectly discriminate against Muslim employees observing Ramadan, who are unable to eat anything between sun-up and sundown.

 

We believe strongly in equality

 

As a firm, we believe strongly in equality and passionately support people whose rights under the Act have been breached in an employment situation.  We have a wealth of experience and resources available to ensure your matter is taken seriously.  We can represent you in the Employment Tribunal if you wish to seek compensation and are proactive and dynamic in our approach to managing cases.

 

If you feel that you have been discriminated against by your employer, either directly or indirectly, we will take the time to listen to your story and support and advise you on the next best steps to take.

 

To make an appointment with one of our employment law team please fill in our contact form, or phone our Truro office on 01872 241414.

Settlement Agreements

There are times when employment relationships, despite all efforts to try and sort out problems between the employee and the employer, do not work out. A settlement agreement (previously known as a compromise agreement) provides an employer and employee with the opportunity to sever ties amicably.

 

What is a settlement agreement?

 

A settlement agreement is a legally binding contract between an employer and employee setting out the terms by which the employment has come to an end.  Generally, the employer will offer the employee a financial settlement to resign in exchange for the employee agreeing not to pursue any claims arising from their employment in the Employment Tribunal.

 

A settlement agreement cannot be legally binding on the parties unless or until you have received legal advice on its terms and practical effect from a solicitor or appropriately qualified trade union representative. It is customary for the employer to make a contribution towards your legal fees for obtaining that advice.

 

Our employment law team have the commercial acumen, legal knowledge and negotiation skills needed to help ensure you receive a fair, financially viable settlement.  You can rely on us to check the offer your employer has made diligently and set out your options regarding the potential for negotiation and how to approach any such negotiation.

 

Deciding not to sign

 

One of the reasons why the law requires you to obtain legal advice on a settlement agreement is so that you can make an informed decision on whether to accept the offer made.  We will assess whether the offer made represents adequate compensation for any potential claims you might have under the law.  If our assessment is that the offer falls short and your employer cannot be induced to offer more, then you may refuse to sign a settlement agreement.  If you decide that this is how you would like to proceed, we can advise you on the best steps to take going forward.

 

Nalders Solicitors comprises some of the Southwest’s foremost employment law experts.  By instructing us to advise on your settlement agreement, you can be confident that your interests will be protected and we will work to ensure you receive the best deal possible.

 

To make an appointment with one of our employment law team please fill in our contact form, or phone our Truro office on 01872 241414.

Unfair dismissal

Unfair dismissal can be unexpected and traumatic.  At Nalders Solicitors, you can rely on us to take control of your situation, provide expert legal advice and support you through the process from beginning to end.

 

The definition of unfair dismissal

 

If you have been employed for two or more years by your employer you have the right to be dismissed fairly.  A fair dismissal is one that falls into one of the following categories:

  • You lack the capability and/or qualifications to do your job
  • You are guilty of misconduct
  • You have been made redundant for a genuine reason
  • To continue with your duties would mean you are breaking the law, for example, you have been disqualified for driving due to drink driving and you must drive as part of your employment
  • Some other substantial reason (these will be determined on a case by case basis)

 

Even if you were dismissed for a fair reason, you may still have a claim for unfair dismissal if the process followed was unfair.  The Employment Tribunal will evaluate whether “in accordance with equity and the substantial merits of the case” your dismissal was fair.

 

For example, if your employer has dismissed you for lack of capability but before doing this, failed to provide you with any or adequate warnings that your performance was not up to scratch and/or refused to give you time to improve, then this could amount to an unfair process.

 

Let us help

Our employment solicitors have years of experience in employment law and have been advising and representing employees from all over the West Country and beyond for over 200 years.  We can provide practical advice at a cost-effective price and help you stand up for your rights as an employee.

 

To make an appointment with one of our employment law team please fill in our contact form, or phone our Truro office on 01872 241414.

Whistleblowing

Whistle-blowers need and deserve legal protection; without this, we risk becoming a nation of corruption and wrongdoing, with employees who are fearful to speak out.

 

Our employment lawyers are there to help provide access to justice for courageous people who speak out in the interests of the public, against corporate or public authority wrongdoing.

 

Legal safeguards

 

The Government has recognised the need for whistle-blowers to receive statutory protection.  As an employee you are protected from victimisation if you blow the whistle in the following circumstances:

  • You work within the organisation you are blowing the whistle on
  • You are making a ‘qualifying disclosure’
  • You are revealing it to the right person in the correct manner (which makes it a protected disclosure)

 

If you are dismissed for whistleblowing, it is classed as an ‘automatically unfair dismissal’.  The qualifying period of two years does not apply in cases of automatically unfair dismissal and the Employment Tribunal is not subject to any cap on the amount of compensation it can award.

 

If you are dismissed or feel you have no choice by to resign (known as constructive dismissal), we will robustly assert your claim in the Employment Tribunal.  Whistleblowing claims attract a great deal of media interest, we will assist you in managing this and making statements.  Our employment law litigators are results focused and driven to deliver the outcome you desire in an Employment Tribunal hearing.

 

Legal advice before you blow the whistle

Many potential whistleblowers come to us to seek advice before they act.  If you are thinking of making a disclosure in the public interest, our expert employment team will guide you through the legislative protections available and help you strategise your approach to ensure your best interests are protected before, during and after making your disclosure.

 

To make an appointment with one of our employment law team please fill in our contact form, or phone our Truro office on 01872 241414.

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Nalders Solicitors is a trading name of Nalders LLP and is a Limited Liability Partnership registered in England and Wales (LLP No. OC354499). We use the term partner to refer to a member of Nalders LLP. A list of the members may be inspected at our registered office: Farley House, Falmouth Road, Truro, Cornwall. TR1 2HX. Nalders LLP is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority No. 538003. Resolution Accredited Specialist. We will not accept service by electronic mail. VAT Registration No. 131 8555 74