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I have been put on gardening leave today but was already…

I have been put...

I have been put on gardening leave today but was already supposed to be on annual leave from today until 22/12. Can they do that? And do I have to cancel my travel and accommodation plans in order to be available to the business as per the terms of gardening leave?

Lawyer's Assistant: Have you documented this or discussed it with HR?

I have an email from 5am this morning telling me I'm on gardening leave and have been shut out of the company and computer networks. I responded asking if they would reimburse my non-refundable flights and accommodation and pay me for the annual leave days I now can't take because I'm now on garden leave not holiday.

Lawyer's Assistant: When we are ready I'll take you to the appropriate web page.

Ok

Lawyer's Assistant: Is the employment agreement "at will," union, full time or part time?

It's UK. It's a 12 month fixed term contract

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

I'm doing a maternity cover role that was due to end at the end of Feb 2018. I resigned on Tuesday and have a final day of 12th Jan 2018. They said they wanted to put me on garden leave because they believe I am going to take a job at a competitor.

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Answered in 3 hours by:
12/15/2017
Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: UK Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 49,502
Experience: Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.

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Was the holiday in question formally confirmed by them?

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
it was - more than a month ago.

Does your contract contain a garden leave clause?

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
C) GARDEN LEAVE
If either you or the Company serves notice on the other to terminate your employment the Company may require you to take “garden leave” for all or part of the remaining period of your employment.
NB. During any period of garden leave you will continue to receive your full salary and any other contractual benefits.

Thanks. Whilst the employer does have the right to place you on garden leave, that would not take precedence over your pre-agreed holidays. Once a period of annual leave has been granted it is binding unless the employer gives appropriate notice to cancel it. That would have to be a notice of at least the length of the leave that is booked. So if you are taking a week’s leave, they need to have told you of their intention to cancel it at least a week before it was due to be taken. They clearly have not given you the required notice period so the leave should stand as originally planned. Even if they gave you the correct notice period, often it would be a breach of trust to cancel it and expect the employee to give up pre-booked travel and accommodation.

If they knew you were going on holiday already, and they have now placed you on garden leave when you are unlikely to be needed anyway, asking you to cancel the leave will very likely be unreasonable and in breach of that implied trust.

You can therefore tell them that you are going to treat the next week as holiday, as originally agreed, and your garden leave will start as soon as you are back from leave.

I trust this has answered your query. Please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars above - this is an important part of our process and recognises the time I have spent assisting you. If you still need me to clarify anything else, please reply on here and I will assist as best as I can. Thank you

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
let's say I take the leave. Does that mean my period of garden leave is reduced? Is it possible to be on garden leave and annual leave at the same time? Or are they obliged to pay me for the annual leave days in my final salary, as I can't take them while on garden leave?

If you take the leave then yes your garden leave starts once you return but your notice would already be running so it will not affect your leaving date, just when you are considered to be on GL. It is possible to be on GL and AL at the same time but the employer cannot expect you to be available for work during that time. They will only be obliged to pay you for the AL days on top if you are forced by them to cancel the AL days, but do not assume - check with them to be sure what they expect of you

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
ok thanks

you are welcome

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Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
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The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

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