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  1. I recommend you get advice from a union or specialist employment law adviser who would need to consider your contract. The general position, based on contract law is that you can refuse to accept a variation of your contract. It takes agreement to change a contract and if you do not agree and communicate this clearly, you can enforce your contractual rights against the employer. It is unusual that the contract itself would allow for demotion and a pay cut, but occasionally these things are permitted as sanctions set out in a disciplinary or performance procedure. If you intend to refuse a variation in terms or job functions, this should be done in writing. You can inform your employer that you do not accept a reduction in pay or the demotion and that he is liable to continue to pay you your old salary. Make it clear you are prepared to work your old duties. You can sue for your salary in the county court based on breach of contract, or make a claim in the employment tribunal for unlawful deductions in pay. You cannot bring a breach of contract claim in the employment tribunal unless your contract is actually terminated by you resigning or the employer dismissing you. You can also resign and claim constructive unfair dismissal if the employers actions are a fundamental breach of your contract of employment and the employer did not act reasonably in treating you in this way. Any employee who wishes to resign over an employer's breach of contract should take advice because if you call this wrong and lose your complaint to the tribunal there is no going back. You need to have one complete years service at date of termination to bring any kind of unfair dismissal claim. Employees who started work after April 2012 will need to have 2 years service to bring a claim. A final course of action which you could give consideration to is standing your ground by refusing to accept the variation, and commencing proceedings to recover the pay. Your employer may then seek to impose the new terms by dismissing you with notice, but offering you a new contract on the revised terms and conditions. Workers sometimes succeed in bringing an unfair dismissal claim after the termination of their old contract by notice and their acceptance of the new contract under protest. It depends largely on whether the employer followed a fair procedure in imposing the new contract and what their reason was for doing this. It would be very likely to be unfair dismissal for an employer to dismiss you for refusing the unilateral variation of terms without offering you to re-engage you at the end of the notice period on the terms you objected to. So for example, a firm who consults about the need to make salary savings, and has a good a reason (eg to avoid redundancies or closure of the business) might avoid liability for unfair dismissal and would have to pay the old salary until the old contract was terminated by notice. One who acts arbitrarily, without consultation and without a good reason may lose an unfair dismissal claim. If the employer has dissatisfaction with a workers performance or is undertaking a bona fide reorganisation he would be expected to follow performance procedures, or to consult transparently about reorganisation plans and have a fair way of matching up people with the new organisational structure. You will have to judge what is actually behind this and whether it has been done fairly. This is somewhat complex law and nobody reading this should assume it will apply to their own case without going into it more carefully. But do take this as a pointer to how things might be taken forward and GET ADVICE. There can be a lot of tactics needed if you do intend to stand on your rights and force the employer into a position where he has to terminate your contract and re-engage you on the worse terms and STILL he may suffer a successful tribunal claim (for which the compensation could include an award for the difference between your old and new salary after you accept a new contract on worse terms). You are likely to need advice through the whole process if you hope to come out of this without losing your job and with a successful ET claim. And of course the employer may employ lawyers and correct some of the mistakes your employer appears currently to have made, to make it less likely that you can win overall. Finally ... act quickly. If you delay in communicating that you do not accept the variation to your job title and pay you may be taken to have accepted a variation of your contract by simply acquiescing to it and not protesting.
  2. Unfortunately you may have missed the time limit for resolving this through the tribunal. it is possible to submit a claim to the employment tribunal claiming that your employer has failed to provide an itemised pay statement and that he has made unnotified deductions from pay. To make a claim you would state that you have not received any itemised pay statement or P45, provide information about what were paid and set out the steps your have taken to try to get payslips and P45 from the employer and via HMRC The tribunal has the power to determine what particulars should have been given in your payslip and also to make the employer pay you for any unnotified deductions in the 13 weeks prior to submission of the claim (so if he has or possibly should have deducted £20 for NI and £30 for tax in the 13 weeks leading up to the date you submit the claim, the employer may be made to pay this to you). And you have a tribunal declaration which clears up the messy situation of your pay and deductions which you could provide to HMRC and the Contributions Agency. The rights are set out in sections 8 11 and 12 Employment Rights Act 1996 Unfortunately the time limit for making the claim is 3 months from date of termination it can be extended only if it was "not reasonably practicable" to submit the claim on time. If you want to chance your arm go online to the Employment tribunal website and put the claim in today!
  3. If he has been paid below the minimum wage he can make a claim in the employment tribunal for wages due at any time during the contract within 3 months of the date of termination of employment. Another possibility may be to bring a claim for unlawful deductions from wages (s13 Employment Rights Act 1996) for the days when his pay was deducted. It seems to me that you are saying his employer allowed him to take Time Off in Lieu for some of the overtime worked but then deducted pay for the days he took off. He might want to try claiming his full pay for those days. Problem with this is time limits - claim needs to be made within 3 months of the date when the money for those days was "properly payable". This would be the pay day when he should have been paid for those days off in lieu. If there was a series of such days you try claiming for all of those days within 3 months of the last one. It might also be possible to bring this claim as a contractual claim for which the time limit is to bring the claim within 3 months of termination of the contract- particularly if his agreement to work such large amounts of overtime was obtained with a promise he could take time off in lieu. So in the tribunal claim he would specify the days for which he was not paid Identify the basis of the agreement with the employer to pay him for these days (who agreed this, what did they say, what did he say) Identify the sums that were deducted/ the sums that he was entitled to be paid and has not been paid State that this is an unlawful deduction from pay under s 13 ERA and also a breach of contract And ask for an order that the employer pays these sums. Finally make sure he claims for any holiday pay in lieu outstanding at the end of the contract, and any notice money due. Here is a handy link to information about minimum entitlement to holiday pay. https://www.gov.uk/holiday-entitlement-rights there is a tool which can help calculate entitlement pro rata and for workers who work different numbers of days per week. I am assuming his contract of employment is not more generous than his statutory rights. For a 5 day a week worker the statutory entitlement is 28 days a year (if you are a worker who gets bank holidays this is equal to 8 bank/public holidays and 4 weeks a year). If you work only part of a year you have to pro rata the entitlement. Regulation 14 of the Working Time Regulations gives an entitlement to pay in lieu of holiday on termination of employment. A tribunal claim for holiday pay pursuant to Regulation 14 should be brought within 3 months of termination. State that he was entitled to x days but took only y days paid annual leave during his period of employment and therefore is owed holiday pay at ££ per day for (x-y) days.
  4. Yes they squeeze you at both ends of your claim as you have found unfortunately. If your job finishes and you have your last months pay in hand it knocks you out from claimaing JSA for the month. When you start work and dont get paid for a month you are expected to sign off when you start work. This gives a fuller list of back to work benefits - but for the most useful ones you have to have been in receipt of JSA or IS for 26 weeks. Benefits and help when going back to work : Directgov - Money, tax and benefits If you pay rent or council tax, as my first post indicated you should have been able to persuade them to increase or allow housing benefit from the date of your partner's pay reduction. And if you have been in receipt of IS/JSA/ESA for 26 weeks when you start work it may be possible to apply for the housing benefit/council tax benefit run on. Thats where the flexibility seems to be unfortunately and it can be very difficult to afford travel and other costs in the first month of a return to work. Try to get an advance on wages or bank loan are the other options.
  5. Try the communitylegaladvice website Ruby. While I agree that there are not many solicitors who know much about welfare rights, if you pick a solicitor from those listed as giving specialist level advice in welfare benefits they should have good experience of that area of law. But don't expect a private solicitor funded under legal help to be able to actually accompany you to the tribunal to represent you in 99/100 cases! Dedicated Welfare Benefits Advisers and Welfare Benefits Solicitors employed by law centres and other not for profit advice services may be more able to help with this side of things... but like I say its a funding lottery
  6. Getting Free Legal Advice to help with benefit appeals I thought it might help to post about getting free legal advice for social security appeals. It is quite a lottery depending on where you live in the country and which advice agencies exist, the level and subject areas of advice which each provides. First point is - please try to see an adviser/solicitor as early as possible. Preferably before you put in the appeal, or if you put it in yourself to avoid missing the time limit, go for advice before there is any appeal date on the horizon at all! Another reason why it can be useful to see an adviser before you submit your appeal is that sometimes they can hit the mark in terms of presenting the relevant facts and quoting chunks of law. All appeals are reviewed by a DWP appeals officer before they are forwarded to the tribunal and a good number will get allowed at that stage if it is blindingly obvious to the Appeals Officer that the DWP has simply got it wrong. The national resource for finding sources of free legal advice is the community legal advice website communitylegaladvice.org.uk The Legal Services Commission runs this site. Their main job is contracting with solicitors, law centres and non-solicitor advice agencies to give advice under the Legal Help Scheme. An organisation who has a contract with the LSC to give advice in an area of law will be listed as providing advice at the Specialist Help level. This site also lists organisations who give advice at the General Help Level. These are organisations who do not have a contract with the LSC. Some of these will only be giving general advice and you may need someone with more in depth knowledge to fight an appeal. However, others have very experienced advice staff or appeals workers but they have just opted out of the LSC contracting system. The problem is you can’t always tell from the site itself! To do a search at the communitylegaladvice.org.uk website I recommend that you Click on find a Legal Adviser Put in your postcode Select the area of law (Welfare Benefits) If you do this search the list it comes up with will include all sources of advice, whether at the Specialist level or Generalist level. If you want to search only for sources of Specialist Advice, or to try to find an adviser who works with a particular client group, at the bottom of this screen there is an option to do an Advanced Search. Click this… Select the level of advice (usually Specialist Help for appeals!) Do you want a legal aid provider (Yes) Whichever search you do, I suggest you click on each agency in the list to read the full details of each when considering whether to make an appointment. The full details may include whether they serve a particular catchment area or client group or even if they can do representation. If you are in a town with few choices, try another search for your neighbouring town and see if that gives more leads. Under Legal Help the adviser will be paid a fixed fee to deal with your case. Legal Help is available to people who meet financial eligibility criteria. There is a legal aid calculator on the site so you can check your eligibility. However Legal Help will not pay the cost of a representative to go to a tribunal hearing with you. This causes a lot of problems for people with Benefits and Employment problems. The Legal Aid scheme will normally pay the cost of representation in a Housing case or other cases (not small claims) which go to a court but not those heard by the tribunal system. For this reason most private solicitors may be unable to actually represent you at a tribunal hearing unless you are in a position to pay, or if they are able to refer you to a free representation service. Law Centres, some CABs, and some independent advice centres may be more able to provide representation at a tribunal. It really depends on whether they have grant funding and enough staff or legal volunteers to meet demand. Some services are not able to offer representation at all because their funding is tight, others can offer it to a reasonable number of clients. There are also in some areas "Second Tier" representation organisations. The best known of these are the Free Representation Unit, Bar Pro Unit and Law Works. All of these try to draw on private solicitors and barristers to give up a few days of their time each year to advise clients for free. There are also in some areas standing arrangements between groups of not for profit advice agencies and law centres to refer cases through to an appeal worker. For all of these 2nd tier arrangements it depends on whether the organisation who you approach has the established referral links to the 2nd tier organisation. None can guarantee representation, but having a longer time to find a rep from another organisation makes it more likely one will be found. Mostly it is NfP organisations who have these links in my experience most private solicitors don't. A few of the 2nd tier representation services will take cases on direct application from an individual but most restrict or strongly prefer the case to have been prepared with help from an advice agency, law centre or solicitor. Non specialist agencies Some CABs and Advice Centres have opted out of the Legal Service Commission way of funding things. Also some organisations like MIND or Disability Advocacy organisations have never really take up this way of funding advice. Some but not all of these organisations employ dedicated Welfare Benefits Advisers, and again, depending on the service offered some of these will do appeals. In most areas of the country local authorities employ Welfare Benefits Officers but their remit can be narrowly restricted to working with those who are eligible for community care services. A few Housing Associations also employ Welfare Benefits specialists, so if you are a tenant of one you could also ask there. A search of the community legal advice service may not find all these Welfare Benefits Advisers if you only search for advice at the "specialist" level. A search for generalist advisers should show most of them but will throw up a lot of organisations who may not be able to help at all with a matter heading for an appeal. You may simply have to work through the list, contacting the each organisation to find out if they have a Welfare Benefits adviser who is able to help with an appeal against refusal of X benefit. I recommend that you discuss the likelihood that the organisation can provide representation at your first meeting rather than on the phone. Because there is not adequate funding for legal representation, the organisation may have to make an assessment based on the merits of your case, how well you may do if you have to go on your own, and what juggle they can pull off amongst the staff, volunteer or 2nd tier resources they have at their disposal before they can give an honest answer to this question.
  7. Make another application for hardship payments They can deny these in the first 2 weeks of a sanction unless you have children or are disabled, are a carer or pregnant. After the first two weeks of a sanction you should qualify if you can show hardship. They should look at Whether you have other resources? Whether there is a substantial risk that essential items such as food, clothing, heating and accommodation will stop being available to you or will be reduced. So provide evidence of your debts, bills etc. Also are you still in receipt of Housing Benefit/Council tax benefit - this should still be paid but may not be in payment if you claimed it expecting to get JSA and they don't have proof of your actual (nil) income. You may have to prove to the council the income you have had or how you have managed to survive (eg letter from mum who has given you £15 a week, evidence from your bank statements that you have lived off and now exhausted your last wages...) Hardship payments are paid at 60% of the rate of normal JSA. With sanctions you can appeal both against the sanction - eg if it was imposed because you left your job "voluntarily" and you dispute this or against the length of a sanction as being too long on the facts of your case, or both. Either post more about the sanction here for people to advise if you stand a chance of appealing or go to your CAB for advice. I would advise anyone in your situtation both to apply for hardship payments AND try to appeal the sanction as well as making sure that the housing benefit and council tax benefit is being paid throughout the sanction period. You may be out of time now for appealing the sanction, but could try to get the appeal accepted out of time if there is a good reason for the delay. You may also need help to deal with your priority debts...
  8. You may find this case Ferguson -v- British Gas useful if you have pleaded it as a harassement case. Ferguson v British Gas Trading Ltd [2009] EWCA Civ 46 (10 February 2009)
  9. There may be a nitpick check Regulations 94-97 Job Seekers Regulations 1996. I am not sure from what you say if your girlfriend is paid 4 weekly or monthly but you did say she was paid on 26th June. The period for which you are treated as having this income should be the same length of time as the period for which the pay is paid. Calculation of earnings derived from employed earner's employment and income other than earnings 94.—(1) Earnings derived from employment as an employed earner and income which does not consist of earnings shall be taken into account over a period determined in accordance with the following paragraphs and at a weekly amount determined in accordance with regulation 97 (calculation of weekly amount of income). (2) Subject to the following provisions of this regulation, the period over which a payment is to be taken into account shall be— (a) in a case where it is payable in respect of a period, a period equal to the length of that period; (b) in any other case, a period equal to such number of weeks as is equal to the number obtained (and any fraction shall be treated as a corresponding fraction of a week) by dividing the net earnings, or in the case of income which does not consist of earnings, the amount of that income less any amount paid by way of tax on that income which is disregarded under paragraph 1 of Schedule 7 (sums to be disregarded in the calculation of income other than earnings), by the amount of jobseeker's allowance which would be payable had the payment not been made plus an amount equal to the total of the sums which would fall to be disregarded from that payment under Schedule 6 (sums to be disregarded in the calculation of earnings) or, as the case may be, any paragraph of Schedule 7 other than paragraph 1 of that Schedule, as is appropriate in the claimant's case, and that period shall begin on the date on which the payment is treated as paid under regulation 96. Date on which income is treated as paid 96.—(1) Except where paragraph (2) applies, a payment of income to which regulation 94 (calculation of earnings derived from employed earner's employment and income other than earnings) applies shall be treated as paid— (a) in the case of a payment which is due to be paid before the first benefit week pursuant to the claim, on the date on which it is due to be paid; (b) in any other case, on the first day of the benefit week in which it is due to be paid or the first succeeding benefit week in which it is practicable to take it into account. The month or the 4 week period starts from the date it was paid if this was before the date of your claim (which it should be if you asked to make a claim from 29th June). So you should get JSA from 25th or 23rd July depending on whether it’s a monthly or 4 weekly pay period. Write in and ask them to revise the decision. If you are claiming housing benefit or council tax benefit or if the drop in household income means that you should now qualify for it, get your claim or notification of change of circumstances in as soon as possible. Housing Benefit will normally take account of an increase or drop in income from the date you start working the revised hours not the date you get paid for them… although they may want evidence such as the employers letter reducing hours and the payslips to do this and therefore may delay assessing the claim until the new payslips are in.
  10. I thought I would give an update on the resolution and the background to our dispute with Orange about our liability to pay charges of £1000 incurred on the theft of a phone, in case it is of some use to others who may be trying to dispute these charges. We corresponded extensively with Orange within days of discovering the theft, outlining the legal grounds of our dispute. We made an offer of settlement at one point of £100 – this was rejected at the time and Orange made no attempt to negotiate a sensible sum. We made an offer of about 10% because we thought it was fair and might reflect the actual losses suffered by Orange by the fraud. Just a guess on our part! Orange put the disputed debt in the hands of 3 different sets of debt collectors acting as their agents, and one purported solicitor who threatened to sue us. We were not bothered about this because we were willing to be put to a defence of the claim to see if we could establish any consumer law precedent – based particularly on the developing law on the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contract Regulations. We did NOT pursue the arbitration schemes because a quick look at the digests of decisions shows that they back the phone companies every time. Orange eventually assigned the debt to Arrow Global. They instructed new agents to pursue us and we copied them the whole file again indicating the basis of our dispute. We did have to suffer the registration of a default on my partners otherwise unblemished credit record and this has caused some annoyance but no fatalities. Our attempts to get Equifax Experian etc to register my partner’s reply to the registration of a default were vetoed – it’s apparently libellous to state that the debt is disputed and the grounds! He had to file something much tamer! Arrow Global then personally served a statutory demand for bankruptcy so we applied to the High Court to set it aside seeking our costs. In support of their application they had the cheek to say So far as we are aware the debt owed is not the subject of any dispute(!) I attach our pleadings outlining the grounds of our application to set aside the statutory demand. If you are thinking of using any element of them please be fully aware this is untested law and it is pushing the boat out just as much as the Bank charges case is. The brave soul who finally fights this point may have to contend with it being taken out of the small claims jurisdiction or even referred to the Commercial Court, and the costs could be very substantial. However if anyone is fighting off a bill in excess of the small claims limit and is eligible for legal aid or has legal expenses insurance and a keen solicitor to take it on.. maybe its worth fighting! There is an argument about restitution – and about limiting the bank’s recovery to their losses rather than the substantial profit they hope to make by passing on the charges in full. This is an area I intended to research much further if the case ever went to court as its complicated and to me very unfamiliar law, and certainly could be pleaded better than my first attempt. However if there are any commercial lawyers looking in they might have a better idea. The outcome of all this effort was a consent order under which we agreed to pay £150 in full and final settlement and with no admission of liability. The statutory demand is set aside with no order for costs and Arrow will remove the defaults. So… I am wondering if we may be in the position that the banks were in with the mobile phone companies. Has anyone actually been sued over a disputed mobile phone charge? Are we in a situation where they don’t want a test case but will simply carry on bludgeoning people? Would anyone like to cooperate in a complaint to the OFT to see if they can be persuaded to consider whether mobile phone contracts comply with the UTICC Regs? It’s a question of how to fairly spread the risk. There are few other human activities as likely to cause you eye watering bills as a stolen mobile phone – the others that there are you can normally insure against, or (as with the banks) these area of risk are subject to regulation to put the burden on the party most able to bear it. These were the grounds set out in our affidavit to set aside the statutory demand. I do not admit the debt for the reasons given below. 1)The whole of the debt alleged to be due to Arrow Global LLC (“Arrow”) is disputed. 2)The alleged debt is for disputed charges applied to an account with my former mobile telephone service provider Orange Personal Communications Services Ltd (“Orange”). Arrow purport to be the assignee of the disputed debt from Orange. 3)The charges in question were incurred when the mobile phone of my partner X was stolen. 4)Between 27th September 2004 and 5th October 2004 it appears that calls were made totalling £1002.96 inclusive of VAT by a person or persons unknown to me or X and entirely without our knowledge or consent. The majority of calls were made to Malaysia and Singapore. 5)In so far as Arrow claim any amount is due on account of the failure to return the handset the same is denied. No demand for return of the handset or to levy charges in respect of this was ever made by Orange. 6)In so far as Arrow claim any amount is due on account of VAT I state that I was advised by Orange on 11th October 2006 that Orange had claimed VAT bad debt relief of £149.38, prior to the date of assignment of the debt to Arrow. 7)No admission is made as to the terms or validity of the agreement referred to by Arrow as being made between me and Orange on 11th May 2001 and I put Arrow to proof of the same by production of the agreement relied on. 8)It is denied that there is an enforceable term in any contract between myself and Orange which has the effect of making me liable for call charges incurred by a third party who acted fraudulently and without the consent of me, X or any person known to us. 9)X and I engaged in substantial correspondence with Orange regarding our alleged liability for the debt. References we made in the correspondence to Orange’s terms and conditions are references to information headed Pay Monthly Terms and Conditions contained in a booklet described as Guide to using your Motorola V500 which was supplied to us in a box with that model of mobile phone. No admission is made as to whether these form part of any contract between myself and Orange, and Arrow are put to proof both of the express terms they say I accepted and my acceptance of them. 10)In the course of correspondence with Orange it appears that a)Orange have not disputed the theft of the phone or that charges were incurred by a third party, fraudulently, and without our knowledge or consent. b)Orange rely on section 6.1.1 of their standard terms and conditions. If this relates to the terms set out in their Guide it reads as follows:- Your responsibilities 6 When your payments are due 6.1 Ordinarily we will invoice you monthly in advance for monthly charges which are non-refundable and monthly in arrears for call and message charges but we reserve the right to amend the invoicing period and submit interim invoices to you. The Connections charge will be included on your first invoice. Charges in respect of Services not supplied directly by us eg. Roaming may be invoiced several months in arrears. VAT will be added to all invoices at the relevant rate where applicable. Payment is due when you receive your billing statement. 6.1.1 You will be responsible for paying all Charges on your Account whether or not they have been accrued by you personally. You will also be responsible for any extraordinary costs incurred in administering your Account including collecting any payments. If your Service has been Disconnected, either at your request or ours, you will remain responsible for paying any outstanding Charges. Further terms and conditions contained within the Guide include the following definitions:- Charges: All charges for Services, as published in our periodically Price Guide. These include any reasonable administration charges. Account: our records of your payments and outstanding Charges, plus your personal details. Services: Network and other Services, including Orange Additional Service provided or procured by us for you to use. 11)I dispute that the express term relied on has the effect claimed by Orange because the fraudulent misuse of a phone is not a “service provided or procured for me to use” under the contract. On a proper construction of the term there is no contractual power or right to apply charges to my account in respect of third party misuse. 12)The term relied on is one which was not individually negotiated and causes a significant imbalance in the parties’ rights and obligations arising under the contract to the detriment of the consumer. Moreover it is one which is not sufficiently clearly and intelligibly expressed by Orange in their contract documentation, or one which they have taken sufficient steps to draw to the attention of their customers in sales and other documentation. 13)I claim that a term which purports to make me liable for the fraudulent misuse of my phone after a theft is an unfair term within the meaning of Regulation 5 Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999. As such it is not binding on me as the consumer pursuant to Regulation 8 of those Regulations. 14)I have a defence to the claim for recovery of a debt made by Arrow for the reasons given at paras. 11) – 13) above, and intend to raise this defence in any proceedings brought by Orange, Arrow or any other party in respect of the disputed debt. 15)I also refer to the other complaints detailed in the course of correspondence between myself and Orange, namely that Orange provided inadequate safeguards to customers and inadequate notification about the degree of risk which they purported to impose on their customers. My complaints included that:- a)There was no facility available to the consumer to monitor any charges incurred before publication of a monthly statement of account. A contemporaneous check by me in the period when the phone was being misused revealed no unusual charges applied to the account. b)Orange’s Customer Security Department monitors individual accounts and their airtime levels but Orange confirmed as I was an established customer my account had a high airtime level and would not have been monitored until this level had been exceeded. Bills on my partner’s phone did not exceed £25 per month, but charges in excess of £1000 incurred over a 5 day period apparently failed to trigger monitoring. c)The Company offered no facilities for the application of “capping” of monthly charges or of barring the phone at a limit set by the customer. d)Sales literature and other documentation issued to customers does not make it clear that Orange purported to expose the customer to unlimited liability for unauthorised call charges or that this is an uninsured (and uninsurable) risk. e)That Orange sought to recover the full amount of charges fraudulently incurred at their normal contractual rate from me 16)In the event that I am put to defence of a claim for this debt, I ask this Court to note in addition to the defence outlined at paras. 11) – 13) above:- a)My intention is to raise a counterclaim that in failing to operate measures on behalf of its customer Orange was in breach of the term implied by section 13 Supply of Goods and Services Act to carry out the service with reasonable care and skill. b)My intention to raise an alternative defence or counterclaim that any claim by Orange or their assignee to recover charges claimed to be contractually due is subject to limitation by application of the principles of unjust enrichment. But for the theft none of the calls would have been made and no profit would have accrued to Orange at all. Any claim of Orange or their assignee is limited to the basic cost of provision of the service provided by Orange and not to the profit they sought to recover. 17)I exhibit to this affidavit the correspondence between myself or X and Orange, the three debt collection agencies previously instructed by Orange, the solicitors of one of them, Arrow themselves and Westcot Credit Services Ltd (“Westcot”) who purport to be a debt collection agency instructed by Arrow. 18)In correspondence with these various parties, I have repeatedly made it clear that the debt is disputed, outlined my grounds of dispute, and made it clear that I would only pay the sum demanded if Orange (or their assignees) establish my liability by obtaining a judgment debt against me. I have indicated that I will defend any claim in the county court, but, despite numerous threats to commence proceedings, to date no claim has been issued. 19)In particular I aver that I spoke to an employee of Arrow’s agents Westcot by telephone on 26th July 2008 and afforded her a full account of the reasons why I disputed the debt. I then wrote to Westcot on 29th July 2008 enclosing a full bundle of the earlier correspondence in this matter. The documents sent at that time are those marked in handwriting 1-49 in the bottom right hand corner in the bundle exhibited to this affidavit. 20)On 26th May 2009 Arrow’s Litigation Department wrote to me by a letter headed Notice of intention to service a statutory demand pursuant to section 268(1)(a) of the Insolvency Act 1996, and claiming The debt is owing and has been for a considerable period of time. To date you have failed to pay in full or propose an acceptable instalment arrangement. So far as we are aware the debt owed is not the subject of any dispute. 21)I claim that Arrow’s actions of serving this statutory demand are an abuse of process as they cannot fail to be aware both of the fact that I dispute this debt and that my grounds for doing so are substantial. For the avoidance of doubt I claim that Arrow had actual or constructive notice of the grounds of dispute notified by me to Orange, to the various agents of Orange, or to Arrow’s agents Westcot. Relief Sought I ask for the statutory demand to be set aside as there is a defence to the claim to recover the debt which discloses a genuine triable issue. I seek an order that my costs be paid.
  11. I don't see a dismissal but a resignation. Its not a constructive dismissal because I cant see that your employer was in fundamental breach of contract to you at the point you resigned. Even if it was a constructive dismissal and unfair you are now out of time to commence a claim for unfair dismissal (3 months from date of termination of the contract). I hope you got a good deal in your severance terms!
  12. The best place to start would be the ACAS Advisory booklet on redundancy http://www.acas.org.uk/CHttpHandler.ashx?id=877&p=0 The main ways to challenge a redundancy dismissal as being an unfair dismissal are:- There is not a redundancy situation and the dismissal is for another reason That you have been unfairly selected for redundancy That the employer didnt follow a fair procedure eg. failing to consider you for redeployment, failing to follow his own written procedures. All are fraught with technicalities... but if you believe that any of these apply in your case you should put in an appeal against dismissal or a grievance about unfair procedures being followed dealing with the points. There was a big watering down of individual procedural rights on redundancy as a side wind of repealing the Statutory Disciplinary and Grievance Resolution procedures in April this year, so the law is still settling down again. But start with the ACAS code and the employers own written procedures on dismissal, redundancy or selection. This is an area where you should probably seek individual advice if you consider any aspect of how your employer is proceeding is potentially unfair.
  13. In circumstances where you have 6 years completed service but would have 7 if the employer gives you statutory notice.... Your entitlement to a redundancy payment will be based on 7 years service whether you are dismissed with notice or dismissed without notice. But your entitlement to notice is based on the service you have at date they either give you notice or dismiss you without notice. So I think that 6 weeks pay in lieu of notice but a redundancy payment based on 7 years is correct.
  14. How long has your mother lived with you in Spain? Did she claim incapacity benefit, ESA or Disability living allowance at all in the UK before coming to live with you. Is she looking for any kind of work in Spain herself? Is she currently fit for any kind of work or not?
  15. If you are planning to rent accommodation within the home occupied by a close relative you cannot claim HB. It it is a seperate property and you have a tenancy agreement you may find that they refuse your application if either it is not a commercial letting or if they find it is a "contrived tenancy" - one set up to take advantage of the HB scheme. Shelter has a useful guidance note here Shelter England - Housing benefit if renting from family In my experience people who rent from family members very often find that it takes the council a lot longer than usual to reach a decision and they may have to appeal to succeed on their claim. It often seems like they applya presumption that you are not entitled to HB and leave you to find evidence to dislodge that presumption! The kind of evidence which can help is if a family member who has an established buy to let with a stranger-tenant then rents to you at a similar rent when a tenant moves out and you need a place. The council may be quite nosey about the business affairs of your relative in order to get the evidence to support the proposition that the tenancy is commercial and not contrived, and it is helpful if the Landlord is willing to provide useful evidence to the council.
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