Friday, 27 November 2009
Tribunal - interesting times.....
Hullo ma wee blog,
Well the time for the unfair dismissal tribunal to hear my case is fast approaching, scheduled for 3rd and 4th Dec, and my colleagues who agreed to give statements and evidence have all stepped up to the mark and confirmed attendance at the hearing which makes me feel both very supported and grateful to them for having the courage to do that when they may need to reapply to the company for employment at some stage. To cover them as much as I can I have asked the tribunal to summons them in effect, which demands compulsory attendance and gives them some scope for stating that they were not 100% willing to come but had no option.
I had a lengthy meeting last Thursday with the very expensive solicitors which my insurance company has provided for me and they have again agreed that my case is valid and are totally confident that any tribunal will decide in my favour. But the decision is only the first part. The next thorny issue for them to decide would be any financial award in compensation of my claim.
My specialist employment law solicitor has advised that this could in effect be a complete lottery, and very hard to forecast due to the high level of redundancy and length of service money in my redundancy payment, which already puts me within sight of the maximum that can be awarded, but he has advised what he thinks would be the likely figure based on his experience.
My former employers representatives have already made an initial offer in an attempt to settle out of court which I have rejected strongly. My solicitor said he was surprised at the level of offer which was high for a first attempt and he said he felt that this reflected their concern at the strength of my case. I turned the screws a bit more on checking who would be attending from my employer to find that it would only be my head of dept by asking my solicitor to instruct a summons to 4 directors to come up from London for two days as, in my opinion, they have accountability for and questions to answer on the fairness of the process used and the lack of high level review and sign off as per the corporate process.
Today I have received a substantially increased offer for settlement out of court and I am going to take some time to consider this over the weekend. I am very much minded to have my day in tribunal and to have my fight fully vindicated. I feel in many ways that my self esteem almost demands it. I am very bitter with my employer for treating me this way after 32 years and so I would also dearly love to see if a few newspapers would be interested in a story of how a high profile company, and one which is regarded as an icon of British industry is using such negligent and underhand means to reduce the workforce in these difficult times. I think they would. I know our local paper would be only too keen as they are not fans of my previous employer and have written several articles about its impact and high handed attitude locally.
Part of me is surprised I feel this way but it has grown in me having gone through the redundancy process and the laughable procedure of two levels of farcical appeal which is now, having experienced it, only really designed to further protect the companies interests and has no value whatsoever as an unbiased protector of your rights as an employee. I have already proved the company incorrect when they failed to advise me of my right to move redundancy payment to pension untaxed, and they have admitted that the process is going to be amended to avoid this in future, but how many thousands, and it is thousands, have been made redundant this year without that information.
I will ponder my options over the next few days.
see you later.
Listening to Satie...... various recordings
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