What action can you take when an employee resigns but does not work their required notice period?
In the first instance, employees are generally under a contractual duty to give their employer a minimum notice of resignation. This duty is waived if the employer has fundamentally breached the contract of employment or has agreed to remove the notice period.
Of course, if the employee does not show up to work during their notice period the employer does not have to pay them. However, the business may then be at a loss in the event that the employer then has additional costs to pay should he bring in an agency worker to cover the role.
At Employment Law Services (ELS) we believe prevention is key!
Preventing the situation from occurring in the first place is always better than the cure. It is recommended that employers insert contractual rights which will discourage the employee from not working their notice period whilst providing the employer with an effective remedy if they do.
An example of this is a contractual clause that permits the company to deduct from the employee’s final wage. This is usually an amount equal to what the employee would have earned throughout the period of notice they failed to work. E.G. If they did not work one week then the employer could deduct one week’s pay off their final wage.
Breach of contract
It is crucial that employers insert these provisions into the contract of employment prior to the employee handing in their notice.
Should you fail to do this, then deduct from the employee’s final wage anyway, this action will amount to an unlawful deduction of wages. For which the employee can then raise a claim in the Employment Tribunal, this will then further prevent you from recovering any losses occurred using another legal remedy.
It can become time consuming and costly when attempting to prove damages to the business and will essentially depend on the nature of the organisation and the role of the employee. Because of this, employers often fail to pursue further action.
Thus, it is extremely important that your contracts of employment are kept up to date in order to protect yourself and the business from unnecessary damages.
How can Employment Law Services (ELS) help protect your business?
For Employers that already have contracts of employment in place, we can review all existing documents and update them as required and for Employers that have nothing in place, we can produce effective contracts of employment for all staff members from scratch.
Whatever your requirements are, Employment Law Services (ELS) can help! Either as a ‘one-off’ exercise or as part of one of our HR Service packages, EmployEasily will ensure your statutory obligations are met and that your business prevents problems and remains protected.
At Employment Law Services (ELS), our team understand that the needs of employers differ depending on the nature of the role that they are looking to fill. We also appreciate that some employers may already have some form of contract with employees, but may be concerned that the contract does not accurately reflect the nature of the relationship or is riddled with ambiguities. It is these issues which often cause difficulties to employers in attempting to deal with employees when difficulties can and do arise. We take pride in offering a service that aims to address these concerns of employers.
Employment Law Support for Employers
If you require employment law advice on any of the issues raised in this article, or any other employment issue give us a call today on 0370 218 5662. You can also find out more about our fixed fee HR packages here and fixed fee employment law packages here, or get in touch.