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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: UK Employment Law
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Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I am a hgv driver and My employer has increased the work load

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I am a hgv driver and My employer has increased the work load required to be completed, we are also apart of an individual fuel bonus for achieving set mpg and completing work set unless you have a reasonable excuse, incuded is also a group performance bonus for completing sent work. The problem I have is that I am unable to complete the increased work load within my drivers hours. I used to complete the work but I was cutting corner and speeding to achieve it. For the past 2 months I have went back to driving safely and legally within the set speed limits along the set route. I have told my transport manager that I am not will to speed and cut corners to get the work do but he doesn't believe me even tho he can clearly see by dyno fleet I do not have the drivers hours to do the work. Other drivers completing the same work set openly admit they are under pressure and I have statements from them saying so. My employer believes the work is achievable but has done nothing official to it can be done within drivers hours. He has removed my weekly bonus which puts me outer pocket by £60 a week for been unable to complete work set. What can I do? And who is actually in the wrong? The ongoing matter is causing me stress and I feel myself becoming sad and depressed at work but I need the money to support my partner and 7 month old son.

Ben Jones : Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Before proceeding please note that as I am a practising solicitor, I am often in and out of meetings, travelling between clients or even at court when I pick your question up. This may even occur at weekends. Therefore, I apologise in advance but there may be a delay in getting back to you and providing my advice. Please be patient and I will respond as soon as I can. You do not have to wait here and you will receive an email when I have responded. For now please let me know how long you have worked there.
Customer: Hi can you please email your response to my question [email protected] thank you
Customer: Worked for them for 2 years
Customer: And the weekly bonus he has removed is my fuel bonus even though I achieved the above mpg. But could not complete all work due to drivers hours.
Many thanks for your patience and sorry to hear about your circumstances. The starting point is that an employer is free to set the targets and achievements necessary to be entitled to a bonus. It is not exactly uncommon to have unreasonable or unachievable targets, which would make employees not being able to claim a bonus, however the usual consequence of that is that the employees could become uninterested and demotivated, which can the backfire on the employer. So in a sense, there is no guarantee that a bonus you have been receiving in the past, especially by breaking the rules, would continue to be paid to you if you no longer meet the targets. You cannot argue that you have to go back breaking the rules because f something happens as a result of that and you are found guilty of misconduct or other offences, it would not be an excuse that you only did this in order to get your bonus. You have to remember that a bonus is just that - it is not part of your salary and it is not guaranteed. However, if you have met the required criteria for the bonus, but the employer has not paid out, then you would have a case against them. If there are a few of you affected by this (even if you are the only one) you are legally entitled to raise a grievance with the employer over this, which is a formal complaint that they have to try and resolve fairly.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Thank you for helping with regards XXXXX XXXXX bonus but where do I stand for not been able to complete the work set legally and safely and within the drivers hours which are enforced my vosa. Can my employer punish or push me to carry out the work? Does my employer not have an legal obligation to set work that is achievable safely? Thank you for your help
You have to keep within the law.If your employer is ousing you to act outside of the law and they punish you for not doing that, then you would certainly have a leg to stand on and refuse to bow to their demands. the law will always take priority - any disciplinary action taken by the employer because you have failed to do something which is illegal will be unfair. They can push you but you cannot be forced to do it.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
What if my employer is aware that his employers carrying out the work are under pressure and not carrying out the work safely and legally because myself and 2 other drivers have verbally told him so but my employer turns a blind eye to that he can achieve load targets. Also in the terms of my fuel bonus it states the transport manager must take into consideration drivers hours. Yet he has still removed that bonus from me for been unable to carry out the work due to not having enough drive time this is my last question you have been a great help and I will leave a good rating for your replies. Thanks again.
As you already raised this earlier, an employer has a duty to endure that the employees can perform their work safely, legally and without exposure to any significant risks. If the employer is knowingly exposing its employees to such risks, they are not really acting within the law themselves.

Thank you and wish you all the best
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