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Unexpected Settlement Agreement

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  • Unexpected Settlement Agreement


    I am looking for some advice. I was asked into the office for a meeting on Friday during which I was unexpectedly told I was in a Protected Conversation and I was to be given a Settlement Agreement.

    A little background, the company had just completed a long term project which lasted 2 years. Everyone on the project was of the opinion it was the worst project we had all worked on. Additionally, I was disappointed that I had not been consulted during key moments of the project. I wanted to discuss key issues with management that I thought needed addressed. Anyway, management never gave me their time of day and parts of the project eventually needed scrapped and reworked as a result.

    Last August I handed in my resignation in frustration. The main boss at my company then showed an interest and spoke to me about the issues I had and seemed shocked by whats was going on and told me that they would make improvements as I was a valued employee. I was asked to reconsider for a period of 3 months to see if things improved and I agreed. We would have a sit down at the end and review the 3 months.

    After 3 months, nothing improved but the project was winding down and I spent the odd day on other things. After 5 months, in passing my boss asked how things were going and I said "the project seems to have ended but I have not had any word of that review we were supposed to have". A couple of weeks later and i get called into the office and get offered a Settlement Agreement, I am told I cannot discuss with colleagues due to it being a Protected Conversation. I had a Manager type follow me around the office as I packed up my things like I was stealing or had just nutted a Line Manager. I could not say goodbye to friends and colleagues. I have no idea what they will be told. I had absolutely no reason to think I would be out of a job.

    So I have been offered.
    • Remaining holiday pay
    • 2 months notice period pay
    • A settlement/termination payment of 20% my annual salary

    I was never given any real reason to why i have been dismissed. My employer is still advertising a job that is similar to mine. I was given no disciplinary. I got on well with staff and I am not incompetent. I know I can reject the offer but I do not know where that leaves me. If I negotiate or reject the offer do i still get paid on my regular payday?

    I was with the company just under 4 years. I know a solicitor will suggest I negotiate the settlement amount but what can I expect?
    I have to be convinced that I would win an Unfair Dismissal case as I have behaved professionally throughout all discussions and I believe my Employer has not followed procedure. Any advice?

    Much appreciated,
    Tags: None

  • #2
    Re: Unexpected Settlement Agreement

    an area here come to mind is that initially you were resigning ( could interpret that you were not happy there & commitment may deem not 100%)? there is another area if you were dismissed without good reason then unfair dismissal comes to mind? if redundant then they cannot offer your old job for a period of time was the old system if I remember correctly?

    as far as service payments then they are trying an area on dodgy ground I would think == please understand this is my observation having been thru albeit decades ago ( they were new managment and trying to get rid of the old managers) they lost tribunal cases left right and centre, they were a national PLC.

    others more knowledge will respond no doubt .

    time served then a comes into play under 4 years limited,= then that seems what they have done given minimal by the looks of it. personally I would run and get on with your life as cannot see too much scope here from the info you have given, ??


    • #3
      Re: Unexpected Settlement Agreement

      As [MENTION=3599]MIKE770[/MENTION] said you need to decide whether from what you have said this is a company that you want remain with. However, if a company is going down this road so suddenly and without any pre-discussion about any issues they have with your performance etc. then this should provide a clue as to the company's position regarding your employment with them.

      A Settlement Agreement (SA) is a legally binding contracts which can be used to end an employment relationship on agreed terms and once signed waive an individual's rights to make a claim covered by the agreement to an employment tribunal or court. I am not sure from your post as to whether they have actually provided you with a written SA document but if not that is the first thing you need to request in order for you to be able to consider what they are offering.

      As part of the process you need to get independent legal advise (which the company should make a contribution towards) from either a lawyer or a certified and authorised member of a trade union. The independent adviser must have a current contract of insurance or professional indemnity covering the risk of a claim by the employee in respect of loss arising from the advice. It will be this advisor who will be best place to let you know whether what is being offered is a "good deal" and if they think not then they will negotiate this on your behalf.
      I do my best to provide good practical advice, however I do so without liability.
      If you have any doubts then do please seek professional legal advice.

      You canít always stop the waves but you can learn to surf.

      You are braver than you believe, smarter than you think and stronger than you seem.


      • #4
        Re: Unexpected Settlement Agreement

        I will be getting legal advice today.

        I know I do not want to work with them any longer. If I win an Unfair Dismissal case does that mean I must go back to work? I figured I would just get a smaller amount of compensation and the right to tell everyone what a crappy company I used to work for.

        I know its probably best to move on but this is not the best experience and I feel the need to push back at them. I have done nothing wrong and I can hold my head high.


        • #5
          Re: Unexpected Settlement Agreement

          if you win then if you insist then they would have to take you back i.e. put you back to the position before the case, but like many of us we said no, (would never settle them as they would be annoyed they lost) make sure when/if you have to go to tribunal and you win that compensation made also includes solicitors/lawyers fees/case fees, as in my case it was not mentioned and I ended up out of pocket (mind you the other side caved in at the very last moment before tribunal).




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