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Change in basic working hours

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I have been employed by a retail company for about 14 months now. My basic contracted hours are 16 hours per week on a 2 week pattern with slightly less hours on week one and slightly more on week 2. Up until now that has been working fine. I have done extra when suitable and have had no problems.


I have a week coming up when I really need to stick to my basic hours as other things are taking up alot of my time, however my manager wants me to work outside the basic hours. When I asked if I could just work my basic hours I was told that it is in my contract that I must be available to work 50% more of my basic hours on any given week and that if i couldn't I would have to have my basic hours cut back to 7 hours a week!


I have looked in my contract and no where does it say "50%". It does however say that:


"the company reserves the right to increase or decrease your minimum agreed commited hours of work and/or vary your working pattern on a temporary or permanent basis, as necessary to meet the operational requirements and/or trading patterns of the store"

The week in question is 20th-26th of December 2009. I can work my basic hours that week but do not want much more than that. I have repeatedly asked to see my hours for that week but my manager says she is either busy, hasn't got them on her or going home. I still have not seen them! Is there anything I can use to help me or am I snookered?



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Don't think you've much of an argument, unfortunately.


It the T&C's of your employment state that you may be required to work additional hours, then you're tied to complying.


About your only argument would be if you can show some statutory reason why you can't do extra hours, ie. Maternity, care commitments etc.


The threat of putting your basic hours down to 7 hrs a week sounds a bit dodgy though.

Would this be a different standard contract?

Do others do just 7 hrs part-time, and it's understood that that's all they're ever required to do?


Have you done overtime on other occasions?

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One more thing..


Does the contract state whether you get paid for this extra work?


I was just thinking; if you're paid National Minimum Wage (or something very close to it), and they won't pay you for doing extra hours, you could refuse on the grounds that to do so would put you under NMW.

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