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Career advice: what rights do you have at work?

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While it’s nice to think that the workplace is always a breeze, the reality is that employees across the nation face a constant battle when it comes to workplace rights. The good news is that there are comprehensive legal specifications in place that are designed to protect you against any workplace grievances you may encounter.

Unfair dismissal

Unfair dismissal is a commonly felt workplace issue that occurs when an employee’s contract is terminated for a reason that is deemed to be unjust. If you started work with a company on or after April 6 2012, unfair dismissal claims may only be filed after a consecutive two years of service have been undertaken.

Redundancy

Businesses that are closing down, have encountered financial trouble, or experienced a reduced need for a particular service, are often forced to issue their employees with redundancy notices. Employers must give as much notice as possible and are required to follow the correct procedures.

Transfer of undertakings

Also known as TUPE, a transfer of undertakings plays out when companies undergo a ‘business transfer’ or a ‘service provision change’ which often has an adverse effect on employees.

Settlement agreement

These are generally used to draw employment to a close and involve the establishment of a legally binding agreement between an employee and employer.

Terms and conditions of employment

While employers are not legally required to provide workers with a contract, within two months they are obliged to offer a written statement outlining specifics such as employer name, employee name, holiday pay, contract hours and job title.

Discrimination

Encompassing areas such as age, disability, gender, race and sexual orientation, workplace discrimination is an issue which should be taken extremely seriously. If you’re experiencing any form of discrimination in the workplace, make sure you’re completely up to speed with employment law. For more information, consult a reputable company such as Co-Operative Legal. With fixed fees starting at as little as £50, the dedicated team will help guide you through the distressing process and ensure that you are protected and supported every step of the way.

Employment tribunals

If you’re due to attend an employment tribunal the chances are you have been unfairly dismissed. The official hearing is designed to resolve workplace issues by awarding adequate compensation.

Holiday pay

Holiday pay problems are generally related to a lack of accrued leave or an employer refusal to pay up when employment is terminated.

Maternity rights

Regardless of how long a person has been employed, they are entitled to take a reasonable amount of paid maternity leave.

Whistle blowing

The public rely heavily on whistle blowers as a tool for disclosing health and safety issues, environmental damage, criminal offences, breaches of the law and workplace cover-ups. If you want to make a disclosure, remember that you are protected under thePublic Interest Disclosure Act 1998 which safeguards employees against dismissal or victimisation.

Unlawful deductions from wages

This workplace right is breached when employee wages are deducted without a former agreement or statutory authorisation. If this has happened to you, take action and raise a formal grievance with your employer as soon as possible.

Part time workers

If you’re a part time worker you have rights too! Employees are protected by the Part-time Workers Regulations 2000 which stands to ensure those with less hours are treated equally to full time workers.

Arming yourself with workplace rights knowledge is incredibly important and can spell the difference between a healthy, enjoyable and fulfilling work life, and one which is burdened with feelings of inequality and dissatisfaction.

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