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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 45340
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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A colleague wrote a letter to my boss creating a list of my

Customer Question

A colleague wrote a letter to my boss creating a list of my shortcomings. I am a professional person. The letter was signed by " all staff" however this was not the case.
I was invited to an informal meeting to discuss the contents of the letter.
My HR department and senior management have expressed no intention to do anything about the letter other than ask me to provide evidence against the accusations.
What action should I take ?
Submitted: 1 year ago via InBrief.
Category: UK Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How long have you worked there for?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi I have worked for the council for 27 years and in this establishment for almost 4 years. I have not had any complaints regarding my management practice prior to this.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I need to leave for work now and will be home at 4 pm.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Good morning, the starting point is that if a complaint has been made the employer would generally be under a duty to investigate this before deciding if any further action is needed. If they have advised that this will not be taken any further then you would know that there is unlikely to be enough evidence to proceed and it would confirm that the allegations were unsubstantiated.
Even if the employer has decided not to take the matter any further, you are still able to raise your own complaint if you believe that the allegations against you were malicious or baseless. You may do this by raising as formal grievance against the accuser and it will be treated in more or less the same way as the complaint against you. The employer would be required to investigate the complaint you made and decide if there is any evidence to take the matter further. If they believe there is, they can for example discipline the other person and that could result in a formal warning. It is unlikely that this in itself will result in dismissal, unless these false allegations continued and they ignored continuous warnings to stop.
In the circumstances, that is more or less all you can do. Further rights may start to apply if there is a continuous attempt to discredit you and it becomes an ongoing attack. However, at this stage the grievance is your best solution going forward.
I hope this has answered your query. Please take a second to leave a positive rating, or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Ben
My employer called me to a meeting to discuss the contents of the letter. I have had ongoing issues with the staff and she decided to meet with them " to give them a voice " . She met with them in small groups with an HR rep then called me to a meeting to discuss 'themes' they identified.
I refuted most of what she commented on at this meeting however they both insisted that staff ' perception' was a suitable reason to ask me to create an action plan and work on specific areas. It is my view, and the view of the other 3 people in the management team, that the staff ' perceptions ' are in fact lies and other passive people in the group let the one or two outspoken staff speak out and did not disagree.
There is a disciplinary hearing next week for a staff member who threatened to assault me and the staff are divided and anxious about reprisals from her about this.
Last week one staff member phoned a registering body to complain about something she claims I said. She also called HR who came out promptly to listen to her. Again she lied in this meeting and behaved badly, at present they don't seem to want to take any action in this regard. Perhaps I should also make a complaint about her ?I do feel that HR have not handled the situation very well and their actions have fed into the current situations. I believe that the easiest option is to consider me at fault - no innocent until proven guilty applies in this situation unfortunately !
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
I will respond in the morning thanks
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello again, the issue in these circumstances is that you only have two options really – the grievance and then resignation and a claim for constructive dismissal. You need to pursue the grievance first. You can indeed make a complaint against this other person if you believe that her complaint against you was done maliciously or a specific procedure was not followed. But apart from this all you can do is the constructive dismissal claim, and it is a rather risky step so only do it if you have no other option left.
I hope this has answered your query. Please take a second to leave a positive rating, or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello, I see you have accessed and read my answer to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this? I just need to know whether you need further help or if I can close the question? Thank you