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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, Solicitor
Category: UK Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 38393
Experience:  Expert in UK Employment Law
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I am a trainee GP (doctor) who was employed by NHS trust hospital

Customer Question

I am a trainee GP (doctor) who was employed by NHS trust hospital from Aug 2011 to October 2012. I was off sick with depression for 6 months (since April 2012 till mid Oct 2012 and then on phased returning to work next week). Before I went off sick, I was being bullied and harassed at work which caused / contributed toward my medical condition and I informed medical staffing about that. I was initially paid full pay for 4 months, but later I received a letter from the hospital asking me to pay back some of the money as they has paid full pay in error. As per hospital I am only entitled for 55 days full pay and then half pay for 2 months. For last 2 months I was paid only Statutory sick pay. I contested this decision as I thought the reason of my sickeness was bullying at work and the trust should take this in to consideration and should have kept me on full pay. The trust has come back and said rule around sick pay remain same irrespective of the reasons of sickness. My question is that if I can ask trust for loss of income because of work condition leading to my sickness and loss of income?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: UK Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is Ben and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. For now please let me know how much you are claiming.

Customer :

I have asked them to pay me full till my employment end with them in Oct 2012. They have refused and also asking me to return the half of pay for june and july months, so I have brought a claim pending to be heard in ET

Customer :

I am also claiming that as my training for the 1 year is not being recognised because of this sickness and I will be qualified a year late. There is 40000 GBP difference in trainee doctor and fully qualified doctor. I wonder if I can claim this money from them?

Ben Jones :

Unless your workplace policy specifically deals with different types of sickness and what you should be paid for each, it does not matter why you were off and the employer is entitled to pay you as per their policy. This would be the case even if the reason for being off sick is related to an act or omission on the employer's part. In other words, even if you were forced to go off sick due to workplace bullying, the employer would not be obliged to extend its sick pay obligations if it goes against their policy on sick pay.

So if the reasons for being off sick were related to bullying, you will be able to make a separate claim for personal injury or constructive dismissal and seek compensation for the time taken off that way. A personal injury claim can be made separately at any time, but within 3 years of the alleged injury occurring (it can also include recognised psychiatric injuries, it does not have to be a physical injury). The constructive dismissal claim would require you to resign first and then claim, which makes it rather risky. Another issue is that such claims must be made within 3 months of leaving so if you left in Oct 20122 you will now be too late to claim and PI claim may be your only option.

Customer :

My eployer has discretion for extending sick pay. My employee's book say about sick pay-

Customer :

My Employees book says -The authority shall have discretion to extend the application of the foregoing scale in an exceptional case. A case of a serious character, in which a period of sick leave on full pay in excess of the period of benefit stipulated above would, by relieving anxiety, materially assist a recovery of health, shall receive special consideration by the employing authority.(My emphasis)

Ben Jones :

I understand, but it is still at the employer's discretion. The law will only cover you as far as the following: if you have been receiving discretionary sick pay and the employer decides to cease making discretionary payments, it may be advisable to give you at least one month's notice of this intention, and/or to reduce it gradually so that you do not go from full pay to no pay in a short period.

Customer :

Also because of this sickness my training has been extended for 1 year. Now there is a about 40000 GBP difference in pay of trainee and fully qualified doctor. As I was bullied and fall sick because of that now 1 year of training is not counted. I informed my employer which chose to ignore and did not do anything . Now that has cause a presumptive loss of 40000 GBP. How do I make a claim of presumptive loss?

Customer :

In my case they paid four months from 03/04/2012 to 29/07/2012 full pay but later claim that I was entitled for full pay till 28/05/2012 and then half pay till 28/07/2012 and asking me to return half of the money paid from 28/05/2012 to 28/07/2012. Do I have a claim that I was being paid under discretion which they have later revoke and asking me to pay back without giving me a month notice. In this case after four months they only paid me statutory sick pay . Should they have given me one month notice before reducing my pay?

Ben Jones :

It will be very difficult to claim for presumptive loss, there are to many 'what ifs' and 'buts' there to be able to have a solid claim that I would advise you to take further.

The issue with the month's notice is that there is nothing specific in law to say that is the notice required - it is just accepted as good practice and if the employer failed to follow this then it does not mean you are entitled to the difference that you would have been paid, rather you can treat this as a potential breach of contract by the employer which would in turn enable you to raise a grievance or consider resigning and claiming constructive dismissal

Customer :

Thank you for your quick response. With regards to my situation I have initially posted the whole scenario on following link. I would be grateful if you could look in to the following link. i will be happy to pay £20 extra as a bonus if you could please answer comprehensively. thanks.http://www.justanswer.com/uk-employment-law/7rd8f-trainee-gp-doctor-employed.html?al=1&utm_source=sys&utm_medium=email&utm_content=viewya_ln&utm_campaign=info_request_sub&r=ems%7C2013-05-20%7C835%7Cln=b1_viewmyr_ln

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
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Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Sir, i am perplexed and I will be grateful if you can let me know what specific queries you cannot answer and why? I am sure you have enough legal knowledge. If money is an issue please let me know so that I can increase my bonus amount.

Thanks.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello, money is not an issue and the biggest issue is time. The queries you have are complex and will take time to research. I am personally tied up with other work for the foreseeable future and do not have the necessary time to look into these in any detail, hence why I suggested that they may be better dealt with by another expert on here, I do apologise that I cannot assist in this particular case

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