Constructively dismissed?


What is ‘constructive dismissal’?

Constructive dismissal is the term used where an employee resigns in response to their employer’s breach of a condition (in other words, an important term) of their employment contract. In this situation, he/she would be entitled to treat him or herself as having been “dismissed”.

What do you need to show in order to make a claim?

  1. Your employer was in fundamental breach of the employment contract.
  2. You resigned as a result of that breach.
  3. You have not accepted the breach by the way you have subsequently acted. (Unreasonable delay in resigning, for example, may constitute such affirmation.)

This must involve a significant breach of an implied term (such as the implied contractual term of trust and confidence) or an express term of the employment contract that goes to the root of the contract (such as a failure to pay wages or similar).

Note: it may not be one incident that amounts to repudiatory conduct but rather a series of incidents or pattern of behaviour which, taken as a whole, amounts to such conduct. The tribunal will in this case consider any previous breaches of contract that may have otherwise been waived by you.

Due to the complexity of this area in law, we recommend that you take legal advice on the individual circumstances of your case.

Why is this type of claim so ‘high risk’ ?

There is a risk you “resign too soon” which can result in you losing a claim.

There is a risk that you “resign too late” which can result in you losing a claim.

There is a risk that what you think amounts to a fundamental breach of contract is not what lawyers / tribunals think amounts to a fundamental breach.

Claims which are presented out of time (that is, later than 3-months-minus-a-day from the date of termination of employment) are not accepted by Tribunals unless there are special circumstances.

The above issues involve a high degree of legal judgement, which is why we recommend getting expert legal advice in relation to your own situation as soon as possible.

What would you get in compensation if you made a successful claim?

Well, this is actually complicated and lot depends on when you find alternative work.

We can help you to get a rough idea though over the telephone.

So what can we do for you?

We can offer a fixed fee legal advice service which includes meeting you and includes reading all your documents.

Call us, e-mail us or complete the form below. One of our lawyers will call you back and see how we can assist. There is no pressure to instruct us. It’s as simple as that.

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Who to contact

For more information the following lawyers will be able to help with Constructively dismissed?.

Andrew Humphrey
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