For expert legal advice or immediate representation for a work pay issue or a bonus dispute, call our employment dispute solicitors 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on freephone 0808 175 8000 or contact us online.
Slater and Gordon Lawyers are experts in advising employees in high-value pay and bonus disputes and can offer you valuable legal advice with efficient service. Whether you need assistance with your negotiations or you want to take legal action over any shortfall in pay or bonus, you can rely on our pay and bonus dispute solicitors.
Work pay claims
If you believe you’ve been underpaid for any reason, your first action should be to speak to your employer to find out why this has happened. If there’s been a genuine mistake, you can request the money owed to you straight away. You shouldn’t have to wait until your next official pay day.
If you can’t come to an agreement over how much your employer should have paid you, you can challenge them. If you’re in a trade union, this body may be able to negotiate on your behalf to resolve the issue. However, if this doesn’t bring the results you want or you’re not in a trade union, you could raise a formal grievance. The next step if the dispute isn’t resolved is to take your employer to a tribunal. Bear in mind that you’ll need to notify the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas) before you do this to establish whether your employer will agree to ‘early conciliation’. This is a way to resolve disputes before they reach the stage of a tribunal.
If you’re taking your case to a tribunal, be aware that the deadline for taking this action is three months less one day from the date you should have been paid the money. This means you need to act quickly.
At Slater and Gordon, our employment solicitors are experts in work pay claims and are ideally placed to help you through this process. We’ll help you to defend your rights and achieve the most favourable outcome.
As well as work pay claims, our specialists can assist you if you believe you haven’t received all the bonus pay you’re entitled to.
Contractual bonuses are those that are based on formulas specified in your terms of employment. For example, these bonuses can be linked to targets, individual performance or the performance of the company overall. Employers have very little flexibility when it comes to awarding these bonuses and if they fail to adhere to the arrangements set out in their contracts with employees, they could face claims of breach of contract or constructive dismissal.
Also, if your bonus is guaranteed, a claim can sometimes succeed through a debt-recovery action. However, this can be complicated if your employment has been terminated, as it’s often dependent on the drafting of your contract and the reason for termination.
Claims involving discretionary bonuses, where the employer determines if anything is payable to you and how much, can be complicated. In some cases it’s possible to recover a discretionary bonus through a claim for breach of contract, but this can be hard to prove. However, employers must exercise discretion in good faith. For example, they can’t withhold bonuses from employees based on personal dislike.
Because of the potentially complex nature of these claims, it’s highly recommended that you seek specialist legal advice before taking action regarding a discretionary bonus. Our employment solicitors have successfully negotiated many settlements while pursuing discretionary payments. Our approach is to look into your precise circumstances and consider if there’s any evidence of bad faith or discrimination in your employer’s decision to withhold or reduce your bonus.
Executive Reps service
Problems relating to pay or bonuses can also be at the root of formal grievances with your employer. If you lack a trade union representative and are facing disciplinary or grievance hearings, we can offer you a specialist Executive Reps service.
An Executive Rep will help you through these hearings, asking questions, making representations and summing up your case on your behalf. They’ll also be there to provide psychological support during what can be very difficult and critically important proceedings.
Negotiating new employment contracts
As well as helping our clients to make work pay and bonus claims, we provide expert assistance with negotiating new employment contracts. We’re alert to the consequences of subtle nuances in drafting, and our experts are skilled in agreeing terms that protect your interests. We’ll advise you on any problems you might have with existing or new contracts and help you to negotiate more favourable terms.
Identifying and resolving potential problems with employment contracts can help you to avoid problems regarding your pay and bonuses further down the line.
Bonus pay/dispute legal advice guides
The laws surrounding pay and bonuses can be difficult to understand. To give you further guidance on this topic, we’ve created guides on Bonus Pay and Bonus Discrimination. You can download and print these resources to find out more.
Contact Slater and Gordon Lawyers
Our independently top-ranked employment law solicitors are available to provide immediate legal representation wherever you’re based in the UK. We can offer you advice on how to deal with any pay or bonus dispute to achieve the best outcome and will support you through the process. As well as offering the highest levels of skill and experience, we aim to keep costs as manageable as possible for our clients.