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Breach of contract in a 'zero hours contract'

Employment and Discrimination Law

Re: Breach of contract in a 'zero hours contract'

Postby south1 » Sun Oct 02, 2016 10:27 am

When you say

“but if you succeed”

Do you mean if my employer would have used the disciplinary procedure against me and I would have succeeded in the disciplinary procedure and not be removed from the project

Or

My employer takes me back and uses the disciplinary against me to remove me from the project if he accuses me again of underperforming and I succeed in this disciplinary procedure and I am not removed again from the project

Or

I succeed in the Employment Tribunal in my claim for breach of the contractual disciplinary procedure and my employer is ordered to pay me for the remaining six weeks of the project that I was not able to work because I was removed from this project before its end and also maybe my employer is ordered by the ET to take me back and treat me as the others casual workers
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Re: Breach of contract in a 'zero hours contract'

Postby atticus » Sun Oct 02, 2016 3:58 pm

If you succeed ... in whatever action you now bring.
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Re: Breach of contract in a 'zero hours contract'

Postby Millbrook2 » Sun Oct 02, 2016 5:01 pm

Do Employment tribunals have a remit to deal with claims under (employment) contract law or just unfair dismissal claims?
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Re: Breach of contract in a 'zero hours contract'

Postby south1 » Sun Oct 02, 2016 5:07 pm

1.
The purpose of the remedies in breach of contract is to put the wronged party into the same place he would have been if the breach would not have taken place. And in order this happens the ET would have to order my employer

a) To pay me a compensation for the six weeks that I was not able to work because I was removed from my project

b) To pay me a compensation for the work that I could have done if other projects would have been offered to me if I would not have been removed from the project that I was doing

c) To pay me a compensation for pension loss

d) To take me back and dismiss me only by using the disciplinary procedure and if he refuses to pay me an additional compensation.

I do not know if the ET can order all these things or only some of them?

2.
My employer in theory does not have any obligation to give any work and concerning the possible manufacture of this obligation to which ‘dls’ refers we can say that the new “Exclusivity Terms in Zero Hours Contract (Redress) Regulations 2015” means that an employer cannot discriminate against a casual worker on a zero hours contract who work for another company in two separate ways. One way is by dismissing him and another way is by not giving him work. I would like to know if this means that somehow as long as a worker on a zero hours contracts has not been dismissed it is implied that the employer has to treat him like the other casual workers on the same contract zero hours contract and provide him work when there is work available otherwise the employer could circumvent his obligation not to dismiss a worker who work for another company by not giving him work?

3.
I would like to add that another finding of my research in the library is that in case of breach of a contractual disciplinary procedure I can claim also for the work that I would have done during the time the disciplinary procedure would have lasted if my employer would have used it against me and this even though I do not have one month continuity to claim for non-compliance with the one week notice.

4.
I would like to reply to 'milkbrook2' that unless I am wrong I think that I can issue a claim for breach of contract to the ET within three months of the breach
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Re: Breach of contract in a 'zero hours contract'

Postby atticus » Sun Oct 02, 2016 5:12 pm

Millbrook2 wrote:Do Employment tribunals have a remit to deal with claims under (employment) contract law or just unfair dismissal claims?

They do. But a county court claim will have a cheaper fee to be paid, and the limitation period is longer (which means there are another 58 months in this thread).
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Re: Breach of contract in a 'zero hours contract'

Postby south1 » Mon Oct 03, 2016 12:25 pm

I would like to know if the disciplinary procedure for casual workers applies also during my probation period according to the following information about it?

1. It is not made any reference to the probation period in this disciplinary procedures for casual workers

2. It is stated in this disciplinary procedure that it applies to all casual workers

3. I signed this disciplinary procedure at the start of my probation period and not at its end

4. In the terms & conditions it is stated that there is a different pay rate during the probation period.

5. This disciplinary procedure concerns also poor quality of work and low productivity and not only bad behaviour

6. Casual workers can also misconduct during their probation period so there should also be some kind of disciplinary procedure covering also this period and there was only this disciplinary procedure for casual workers

7. This disciplinary procedure lasted only 30 hours
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Re: Breach of contract in a 'zero hours contract'

Postby atticus » Mon Oct 03, 2016 1:05 pm

It would be very unusual if it did not apply.
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Re: Breach of contract in a 'zero hours contract'

Postby south1 » Mon Oct 03, 2016 1:53 pm

The processing of this disciplinary procedure which is made up of three stages during which the casual worker is entitled to be given a chance to improve, to attend meetings and to appeal will last a lot more than the 30 hours of the probation period. Hence my question is what this probation period mean because if my employer has to use the disciplinary procedure even during this probation period to remove a casual worker who underperform and this disciplinary procedure will last more than this probation period?

Can we say that it was up to my employer to have a probation period which lasts at least the time it takes to process its disciplinary procedure for casual workers or not to have disciplinary procedure for casual workers?
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Re: Breach of contract in a 'zero hours contract'

Postby dls » Mon Oct 03, 2016 3:48 pm

Can we say that it was up to my employer to have a probation period which lasts at least the time it takes to process its disciplinary procedure for casual workers or not to have disciplinary procedure for casual workers?


No.

The probationary period and the disciplinary procedure run in parallel. The probationary period arrangement is an agreement in advance that it will not be a breach of contract for the employer (or employee) to simply terminate the contract as the period expires and usually without notice.

A disciplinary may terminate the contract in advance of the period, and if a disciplinary action is incomplete the employer simply terminates the contract with the probationary period and has no need to finish the disciplinary procedure. it has no continuing contract with the employee allowing him to do so.

Of course there are many different
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Zero hours contract, offer, acceptance, withdrawal of offer

Postby south1 » Sat Jan 14, 2017 10:14 am

I have a contract called a ‘zero hours contract’ with a firm

I was offered a two-week project. Unfortunately my supervisor did not like something on me and I was removed from the project at the end of the first day but without proving that my performance was worse than the other casual workers on the same project.

1.
I would like to know if I can claim for breach of contract for the remainder of the two weeks because my contract contrary to other zero hours contracts does not contain a clause where it is stated that my employer reserves the right to cancel the work that he has offered and has been accepted by the casual worker

I know that other companies have clauses in their zero hours contract which say something like

“Allocation of work is entirely at the company's discretion and we also reserve the right to withdraw offers of work and remove you from the panel of casual worker at our discretion.”

or

“The Company reserves the right to terminate an assignment at any time for operational reasons. You will be paid for all work done during the assignment up to the time it is terminated”

So what could be the difference between a zero hours contract which has such a clause and one which does not have it. The issue is what happens to the zero hours contracts which do not have such a clause. Does this means that the employer can removed the work that he has offered to the casual and which has been accepted by the casual worker only if they have a good reason which frustrates the contract and makes impossible the performance of the project for example the projecdt is completed or the worker perform very badly his work and is in breach of contract himself for this reason

2.
I heard that ‘zero-hours contracts’ do not have a specific meaning in law because there is no statutory definition of them so I think that all depends of the terms of our contract

Therefore I may be entitled to something for breach of contract because the use of the word ‘assignment’ in several terms of my contract which are the following:

“It is the intention of both you and the Company that there be no mutuality of obligation between the parties at any time when you are not performing an assignment.”

“Each offer of work by the Company which you accept shall be treated as an entirely separate and severable engagement. The terms of this Contract shall apply to each assignment but there shall be no relationship between the parties after the end of one assignment and before the start of any subsequent assignment”.


“If the Company wants to offer you any work it will notify you of the same. Lf you accept an assignment, you must inform the Company immediately if you will be unable to complete it for any reason.

“If you satisfy the qualifying conditions laid down by law, you will be entitled to receive statutory sick pay ("SSP") at the prevailing rate in respect of any period of sickness or injury during an assignment but you will not be entitled to any other payments from the Company during such period.”

The issue is what in my contract is meant by the use of the word ‘assignment’. Does it mean a ‘specific task like a project’ or it could be only one hour work during a shift.
If my employer could remove me from a project when he wishes it would mean that each separate hour of work is an assignment and because in my contract it is stated that a normal shift is seven hours and I am paid by hours this would mean that I perform seven different assignments during a shift

My employer in his email makes reference to the duration of the project and he told me that it will be two weeks. My employer asks me if I would be available for the entire project.

My employer could says that he does not any obligation to provide me with a minimum number of hours of work but I was entirely removed from the project after the first day what is a different matter that cancelling shifts occasionally for operational reasons. Moreover the other casual workers remained in the project because the project was not terminated

By removing me from the project my employer made impossible the performance of the contract i.e. the possibility of giving me work even if he wishes. Once I was removed from the project this issue of giving me work only if he wishes is redundant

When at the end of the first day I was removed from the project my employer told me that he has to cancel all my shifts for this project

3.
The third term above and the two following terms require me to confirm my availability to do a project and to notify immediately my emplyer if I am unable to work hours agreed if I have accepted an offer of work.

“A normal shift is seven (7) working hours. Unpaid break for lunch should be taken as required by the applicable UK Health and Safety regulations. Hours of work will be communicated in advance as far as reasonably practical. You will be expected to confirm your ability to meet the Company's request in advance. You may be required to work additional hours as necessary to complete your duties

“If you have accepted an offer of work but are subsequently unable to work the hours agreed, you must notify your immediate Field Manager of the reason for your absence as soon as possible but no later than 09:00 on the first day of absence”

However my contract does not set out the terms that will apply where hours have been offered by the employer, accepted by the casual worker and them withdrawn by the employer. I would like to know if these terms are not missing from my contract and give me right to a compensation for breach of contract.

4.
I would like to know if what matters is the expectation of the parties to a contract because I could have refused to work for another company to work for this company because my employer caused me to believe that I will do a two-week project because there is no clause in our contract which says that he can removed me from a project at his discretion without any good reasons

5.
I would like to know also if there is not also a problem of basic contract law about offer and acceptance because one term of my contract says

“You and the Company each acknowledge and agree that the Company is under no obligation, at any time, to provide work or hours for work to you and you are under no obligation, at any time, to accept any work or hours of work from the Company"

However the issue is what happened when work or hours for work have been offered and have been accepted because I heard that according to contract law when an offer is made and it has been accepted there is a binding contract.
I would like to know if we have to do a difference between offering work and removing it when it has been accepted by the casual worker?

6.
Another issue is what could the intended meaning of ‘work or hours of work’ used in the term above

I have googgled this expression but I found nothing. I would like to know if ‘work’ means a specific task like a project and ‘hours of work’ means that a project is not given to us to but we can be asked to work on it occasionally
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