A traditional firm with a modern approach
At Taylor Fordyce, we regularly advise and assist clients in relation to employment disputes, including disputes involving contract terms, grievance or disciplinary proceedings and settlement negotiations upon termination of employment.
Whilst most disputes will relate to an Employer’s decision to end the employment, there are many other types of employment dispute we are able to assist you with, including TUPE (regulations as to the transfer of any business affecting employee rights), claims as to inequality and discrimination, bullying, whistleblowing protection and wrongful wage deductions.
Employees may also seek to refer a dispute to an Employment Tribunal, but the proviso for doing so (in most cases) is that the claim is issued within 3 months of the employment termination date. It is therefore critical to get professional advice at the earliest opportunity, to optimise the options available to you.
Click on the links at the top of the page to give us a call or to make an enquiry and our employment dispute lawyers will be happy to provide you with further information and advice about our services.
Our employment dispute solicitors’ expertise
Our employment dispute solicitors understand the stress and concern you may be feeling about your employment dispute. For example, if you have been dismissed or made redundant, you’re probably feeling anxious about money or your reputation, or if you are facing bullying or harassment at work, you are may be feeling vulnerable, upset, and angry.
We provide a comprehensive employment dispute advice service, designed to promote and protect your rights as an employee. Our employment disputes solicitors will listen carefully to your issues, concerns, and goals for the outcome of the dispute then provide specialist advice tailored to your individual circumstances.
Our services cover every aspect of employment law, including:
- Contract disputes
- Unfair dismissal
- Constructive dismissal
- Pay, salary, and remuneration disputes
- Discrimination on the basis of age, sex, disability, marriage or civil partnership, pregnancy, maternity and paternity, religion, gender, gender reassignment, or sexual orientation
- Worker status
- Bullying and harassment
- Grievance, disciplinary, or misconduct proceedings
- Restrictive covenants
- TUPE (Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations)
- Settlement Agreements
- Wage deductions, Working Time, and holiday pay disputes
- Employment Tribunal
- Maternity and paternity pay disputes
You only have 3 months after your termination date or the date of incident in dispute to start Employment Tribunal proceedings. It is therefore essential that you contact us as soon as possible to get your claim on the way.
From the moment your workplace dispute or problem arises, our employment disputes lawyers will be on hand to provide support and guidance.
The first steps you take will depend on the type and seriousness of the dispute which has arisen. Many disputes can be resolved amicably through conversation and negotiation and we can help you start informal discussions with your employer or former employer, assist you in accumulating and preparing evidence, and prepare a formal written complaint on your behalf if it becomes necessary to take the dispute further.
Employers are generally keen to settle employment disputes without going to an Employment Tribunal to protect their business reputation. One way this is possible is to negotiate a settlement agreement with their employee.
A settlement agreement is a formal arrangement where your employer agrees to terms such as:
- To pay you a sum of money
- To stop treating you unlawfully
- To bring your employment to an end
In return, you will agree to waive your claims and will no longer be able to take your employer to an Employment Tribunal. Because of this waiver, a settlement agreement will not be binding unless you receive independent legal advice.
As such, employers will usually agree to pay their employee’s settlement agreement-related legal fees and are often willing to cooperate with you in order to avoid Tribunal proceedings.
Therefore, settlement agreement negotiations are often a successful, low-risk method for employees to settle employment disputes.
Acas Early Conciliation
If you want to raise an employment claim in an Employment Tribunal, you are legally required to inform the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas). Acas is a Government funded organisation which helps employers and employees through workplace disputes.
When you tell Acas you intend to start Tribunal proceedings, they will offer you the opportunity to first try Acas Early Conciliation.
Just as you have 3 months to start Employment Tribunal proceedings, you also have 3 months from the date of the event which triggered the employment dispute (or 6 months if you’re claiming equal pay or statutory redundancy pay) to start Early Conciliation.
However, the moment you start Early Conciliation, the clock counting down your time to start Tribunal proceedings stops running for 1 month. Acas can also extend this period by 2 weeks if you and your employer are close to reaching a settlement.
During Early Conciliation, you will be assigned an Early Conciliation officer who will work like a mediator; they are an independent third party who will facilitate your discussions but won’t give you advice. Instead, our employment dispute solicitors can support you through the process with legal advice and can also help you negotiate with your employer.
At the end of Early Conciliation, Acas will give you one of the following documents:
- Early Conciliation certificate – if you cannot reach an agreement.
- COT3 agreement – if you reach an agreement. Like a settlement agreement, a COT3 agreement is a legally binding document outlining the terms of your settlement and waiving your right to take the matter to a Tribunal.
If you and your employer cannot reach an agreement during settlement agreement discussions or Early Conciliation, we can provide practical advice on starting a claim in the Employment Tribunal.
You have 3 months from the date of your termination or the event which triggered the dispute to start your claim. If you stop the clock for Early Conciliation, it will pick up where it left off as soon as Early Conciliation ends.
If you choose to start an Employment Tribunal claim, we will support you every step of the way, including advising on the merits of your claim, explaining the relevant law, preparing the required documentation (including helping you obtain evidence and witnesses), providing robust representation in the Tribunal hearing, and claiming back costs from your employer if you are successful.
Why instruct Taylor Fordyce’s employment dispute lawyers?
At Taylor Fordyce, we put clients first. When you instruct our employment dispute lawyers, you can expect a bespoke, personalised service designed to promote your employee rights and achieve a positive result which enables you to move on with your life and career confidently.
Our head of litigation, Paul Smith, has nearly three decades of experience working in civil litigation matters, including employment disputes. An expert in methods of Alternative Dispute Resolution, he has a multitude of experience helping employees settle their disputes harmoniously, often without the need to resort to lengthy Tribunal proceedings.
Taylor Fordyce is independently regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).
Contact our employment disputes team for further information and advice today
Click on the links below to give us a call or make an enquiry and our employment dispute lawyers will be happy to provide you with further information and advice about our services.