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any one hot on employment law?

any one hot on employment law?

Old Aug 15th 2007, 5:08 pm
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Default any one hot on employment law?

Hi Guys,
well our move to oz wont be for just over two years which is frustrating as OH and i are fed up and want to go sooner we are just wasting the time here.
the problem is with me, i work for a local council who has put me through a post graduate course and i signed something to say that after i finish i will stay with them for two years or pay the costs which would amount between 5 - 7 thousand (i havent got the numbers yet as i havent yet finished). anyway what i was wondering is, if i give my two months notice, cant afford the fees what would they do? it says they will recoup the costs from my salary well two months will be nothing, could they take a whole months salary or only a small percentage? and then if i am abroad how would they get the money too me anyway?
its just so frustrating, i am sick of work we are short staffed and too over worked i want to start my new life and moan about something else!
any ideas?
sarah
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Old Aug 15th 2007, 5:14 pm
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

Originally Posted by sormesher View Post
Hi Guys,
well our move to oz wont be for just over two years which is frustrating as OH and i are fed up and want to go sooner we are just wasting the time here.
the problem is with me, i work for a local council who has put me through a post graduate course and i signed something to say that after i finish i will stay with them for two years or pay the costs which would amount between 5 - 7 thousand (i havent got the numbers yet as i havent yet finished). anyway what i was wondering is, if i give my two months notice, cant afford the fees what would they do? it says they will recoup the costs from my salary well two months will be nothing, could they take a whole months salary or only a small percentage? and then if i am abroad how would they get the money too me anyway?
its just so frustrating, i am sick of work we are short staffed and too over worked i want to start my new life and moan about something else!
any ideas?
sarah
Yes, they can recoup the cost, take you through the courts etc. You owe the money, end of story.

You could try negotiating it down a bit. Divide the cost of the course by 24 (ie 24 months), then multiply by the number of months short. This would be a fair amount for you to pay.

You could also negotiate paying them back over time eg 300 pounds a month for the next however long - try for interest-free.

Good luck.

Oooh just had a thought. If the job is so stressful that you are considering leaving, then you need to talk to bosses/seniors etc. Stress = long-term paid sick leave etc! They wouldnt want that...can they fix the staffing/workload problem? Dont think that being such a stressful workplace would be grounds for "constructive dismissal"....do you have a union that u could talk to about this?

Last edited by Ozzidoc; Aug 15th 2007 at 6:52 pm.
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Old Aug 15th 2007, 6:17 pm
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

There was a case several years ago with a trainee solicitor who was held into contract for two years - she fought it and it was found that a year was reasonable. I can't for the life of me remember the case name though.

As to taking money from your salary - unless you have signed anything to say otherwise they cannot take anything from your salary other than tax, NI and anything under a court order. (this may have changed since I did employment law which was years ago!)
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Old Aug 15th 2007, 6:22 pm
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

No that's right - no one can touch your pay without a court order.
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Old Aug 15th 2007, 6:37 pm
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

Your employer can make deductions from your salary in the follwing circumstances;

- Authorised to do so by statute (e.g. tax; national insurance) or

- County Court Judgement against you and the Court has made an attachment of earnings order. (In Scotland, a Sheriff Court decree against you and an earnings arrestment has been served on you.)

- Authorised by relevant provision of the contract which can be express or implied or written or oral but your employer must notify you of the term's existence and explain its effect before attempting to deduct.

- You have previously signified in writing your agreement or consent to the deduction being made


As you signed something to the effect agreeing this, then this is effectively a contract you have entered into with your employer and as such they would be authorised to deduct this money.

Good luck with your decision.

Denis.
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Old Aug 15th 2007, 6:45 pm
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

is that right

i've just had over £800 taken off my last salary because of a computer scheme our council belonged to, if i thought i had grounds to challenge i would ,
any info would be welcome, the scheme was a 3 yr lease (we are 18 months into it) with a final fee if you wished to keep the equipment or you handed it back. As I left early , i had to pay the final instalments with no reduction and a closing fee but got to keep the computers, which i now have to pay for shipping on. Were they within their rights to do this

ps we had no idea we would be moving when the scheme was offered
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Old Aug 15th 2007, 7:00 pm
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

Originally Posted by struth View Post
is that right

i've just had over £800 taken off my last salary because of a computer scheme our council belonged to, if i thought i had grounds to challenge i would ,
any info would be welcome, the scheme was a 3 yr lease (we are 18 months into it) with a final fee if you wished to keep the equipment or you handed it back. As I left early , i had to pay the final instalments with no reduction and a closing fee but got to keep the computers, which i now have to pay for shipping on. Were they within their rights to do this

ps we had no idea we would be moving when the scheme was offered

This sounds about right. These sort of schemes are usually linked to some form of tax relief, ie the payment is taken out before you are taxed, resulting in you paying less tax. However if you leave the scheme early you lose out on this benefit. The main thing is like with any contract...read the fine print.

Denis.

Last edited by Rach & Den; Aug 15th 2007 at 7:00 pm. Reason: spelling
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Old Aug 15th 2007, 7:18 pm
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

Originally Posted by sormesher View Post
Hi Guys,
well our move to oz wont be for just over two years which is frustrating as OH and i are fed up and want to go sooner we are just wasting the time here.
the problem is with me, i work for a local council who has put me through a post graduate course and i signed something to say that after i finish i will stay with them for two years or pay the costs which would amount between 5 - 7 thousand (i havent got the numbers yet as i havent yet finished). anyway what i was wondering is, if i give my two months notice, cant afford the fees what would they do? it says they will recoup the costs from my salary well two months will be nothing, could they take a whole months salary or only a small percentage? and then if i am abroad how would they get the money too me anyway?
its just so frustrating, i am sick of work we are short staffed and too over worked i want to start my new life and moan about something else!
any ideas?
sarah
Try not to burn your bridges if you can............. you'll probably need a reference from them when you do leave?
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Old Aug 15th 2007, 7:20 pm
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

Originally Posted by struth View Post
is that right

i've just had over £800 taken off my last salary because of a computer scheme our council belonged to, if i thought i had grounds to challenge i would ,
any info would be welcome, the scheme was a 3 yr lease (we are 18 months into it) with a final fee if you wished to keep the equipment or you handed it back. As I left early , i had to pay the final instalments with no reduction and a closing fee but got to keep the computers, which i now have to pay for shipping on. Were they within their rights to do this

ps we had no idea we would be moving when the scheme was offered

Check your contract carefully. I work for a local authority and helped implement the HCI agreements. Our contracts state they can take all your salary (if necessary) up to the value of the ooutstandingloan balance. If you owe more, they raise a Customer Invoice which you have to pay within 28 days. All this is specified in the HCI contract signed by our employees. The final payments are after tax! The payments while you are employee are taken before tax. And yes, they charge a bit on top for admin charges. I think ours is one months extra payment.

Hope this helps.

Amanda

Last edited by Amanda Jayne; Aug 15th 2007 at 7:23 pm.
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Old Aug 15th 2007, 10:15 pm
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

Hi,

My advice is to be honest about wanting to leave with your employer! Say you don't want to leave but your OH wants to emigrate and your marriage will break down if you don't go. Then say you are willing to negotiate a settlement and take a loan out to repay what you owe them. Ask if they can offer a repayment scheme. You may just get away with it if they feel you have been honest and because you haven't finished the course, you aren't walking away with a qualification they paid for.
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Old Aug 15th 2007, 10:33 pm
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

Originally Posted by Gotooz1 View Post
Hi,

My advice is to be honest about wanting to leave with your employer! Say you don't want to leave but your OH wants to emigrate and your marriage will break down if you don't go. Then say you are willing to negotiate a settlement and take a loan out to repay what you owe them. Ask if they can offer a repayment scheme. You may just get away with it if they feel you have been honest and because you haven't finished the course, you aren't walking away with a qualification they paid for.
Ooooooo good advice!
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Old Aug 15th 2007, 10:44 pm
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

Going back to your original question, unless you need a reference from them, and in no way is it honest or ethical, but if you give them no notice, there is nothing they can do about that, and even if in your absence they take you to court the most they are ever likely to do after you have left the country is try to sell your debt to a collection agent, and they will not persue you abroad. In real terms court action and debt collection is so disjointed it is suprising they ever manage to collect anything!

After 5 or 7 years ( or something like that...wheres a lawyer when you need one!) they would have no recourse to law whatsoever.

I am not suggesting this is the correct route at all but it is close to the truth
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Old Aug 15th 2007, 11:48 pm
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

Originally Posted by windog View Post
Going back to your original question, unless you need a reference from them, and in no way is it honest or ethical, but if you give them no notice, there is nothing they can do about that, and even if in your absence they take you to court the most they are ever likely to do after you have left the country is try to sell your debt to a collection agent, and they will not persue you abroad.
They might pursue you abroad! At my previous company we had two people who left and didn't pay back their training bond. The company successfully recovered the money from them in New Zealand and Canada.
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Old Aug 16th 2007, 1:04 am
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

Originally Posted by Gotooz1 View Post
Hi,

My advice is to be honest about wanting to leave with your employer! Say you don't want to leave but your OH wants to emigrate and your marriage will break down if you don't go. Then say you are willing to negotiate a settlement and take a loan out to repay what you owe them. Ask if they can offer a repayment scheme. You may just get away with it if they feel you have been honest and because you haven't finished the course, you aren't walking away with a qualification they paid for.
I agree - it is better to be honest with your employer. If you aren't, they are more likely to pursue the debt as a matter of prinicple. If you are up front and negotiate, they may be willing to work out a compromise.

It is always better to part on good terms with employers as you never know when you might need to call on them and, as the song says, "what goes around comes back around".
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Old Aug 16th 2007, 6:08 am
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Default Re: any one hot on employment law?

I would definitely agree with the poster who asked whether 2 years is "reasonable" or not. I would say probably not. 1 Year is more likely to be seen as reasonable in a court. Also it depends how necessary the qualification was for you to do your job. The more necessary, the less likely the employer's claim for the money from you would stand up in court as it was part of the job requirement.

I suffered a similar situation in the UK. Stayed in a job 1 year longer than I wanted to and put off my emigration by a year so I didn't have to pay my employer the money. As soon as I could leave I did!

However, in my experience in HR we had a lot of people who would walk out on pay day oweing money for season tickets, overtaken holiday, course fees etc. Ocassionally we would pursue it and register the debt with a court if asking nicely didnt prove fruitful (which is not a good thing for the employee who then has a county court judgement against them, but if you're moving to Australia do you really care?). More often than not though we would write it off. Solicitor's fees were more expensive than the amount we were hoping to recoup
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