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Urgent TUPE question - thank you


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Sorry to bother you, but I have an urgent TUPE issue.

 

A group of professional workers including myself have been tupe’d back in to a county council. Previously we were sub contracted by the council to a private firm. Our contract was with the private firm and our pay scale went to £28k.

 

However, the council brought the work back in house and tupe’d us. However, during this time the JEQs took place and our job was reclassified as being on a scale rising to £25k only. Those employees employed after we returned in house are on this new scale. That we understand. However, as the council is now seeking harmonisation as they are going to be a unitary authority next year, they have frozen our pay and said that after 3 yrs we will revert to a maximum £25k similar to new employees.

 

From my reading of TUPE this is unlawful as:

 

We should retain all erms and conditions inc. pay

There is no time limit on TUPE

Harmonisation doesn’t have to be enforced

There is no ETO condition applying as no redundancy will take place and everyone is working in the same location doing the same job

 

Council is playing hardball, our managers are being leaned on by higher individuals and our union is taking a very defeatist attitude. They say that we may not have a case because of equal pay claims taking precedence over TUPE – surely not the case is it?

 

Please help if you can. Also, if you are giving any specific feedback can you please let me know what capacity you are giving it in (lawyer, paralegal, layman) and also ref any caselaw you are basing this on. I am meeting with the union and other workers on Thursday.

 

Many, many thanks.

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I believe you are right, harmonisation should be a levelling process, usually to the better of all the terms and conditions available at the time. I'd have a word with the union people on this, they should be able to help out. I am giving this advice in my capacity of a) former HR administrator, b) union advisor, c) somebody currently involved in a TUPE from private to public.

 

If the union is defeatest you need to try and get new union people active for you - I am being pressed to become a union rep, a job I don't mind doing as I have had plenty of HR experience and know what conflicts some people like to start to make them look important.

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Hi, I am not an employment expert but do have experience of TUPE. There are two issues that you raise and are distictly different (i) firstly, the terms and conditions that you are offered must be at least equal to what you were contracted to prior to being transferred under TUPE. Hence your salary, pension, hours of work and other benefits that are transferred to the new contract holder must be equal or better and (ii) it sounds like your new employer conformed to these but then subsequently sought to alter you terms and conditions of emplyment - is this correct?

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Hiya Ajbry,

 

i was transferred from a contractor back into spelthorne council although i chose not to go down this route due to me living on south coast and spelthorne being in middlesex and the fact i would have to be up at 4am to start work at 6 am in my case i took the redundancy and pay off.

 

Now as i understood the transfer of undertakings (T.U.P.E) they have to honour your contract as it was at your current employer.

 

If i were you id get a solicitor as we did and the council will have to pay those costs we had a solicitor which spelthorne paid for

 

As regards to you pay i will post a lonk here to the BERR site as i cant copy and paste a shippet of info because its a pdf file.

 

It has your answer here under employee section.

 

http://www.berr.gov.uk/files/file20761.pdf

 

Regards

 

Leon

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