Case study: potential constructive dismissal claim against employer
Our client came to us whilst she was experiencing a complete breakdown of trust and confidence in her working relationship with her employer. Her employer had breached numerous express and implied terms of her employment contract by varying its terms without her consent, changing the terms of her bonus and commission scheme without notification or consultation, and demoting her to a reduced role.
Our client understandably felt she had been mistreated; her employer’s conduct was causing her a great deal of stress and anxiety, and she did not feel able to continue in her job.
Our employment team advised our client on the various options available to her, including her potential constructive dismissal claim. Our client was adamant that she did not wish to continue working for her employer and so, with our guidance and support, she found the courage to hand in her resignation letter, drafted by us. The letter informed the employer that our client would be proceeding to ACAS early conciliation and then to tribunal proceedings on the basis of a constructive dismissal case, unless they could come to an amicable solution whereby she was paid appropriate compensation for the termination of her employment (as she was left no choice but to resign) and her loss of bonus and commission. Our client’s employer was uncooperative.
We commenced the ACAS early conciliation process on our client’s behalf, liaising with an ACAS conciliator who guided and supported our client throughout the process. We also gathered supportive witness evidence to back our client’s claim, including her employer’s conduct, the lack of a justifiable commercial reasoning to amend the bonus scheme (the fact it was a vindictive act carried out following a disagreement between the parties), and the demotion and impact that had on our client’s CV and future job hunt.
We carried out settlement negotiations on behalf of our client. Although her employer’s opening offer was not satisfactory, we successfully negotiated a higher settlement amount. With the higher amount we had negotiated, we all agreed the best option for our client was to accept this and bring the matter to a conclusion. Our client was relieved to have reached a settlement as she had been distressed at the prospect of facing her employer at tribunal.