One issue that keeps arising when employees seek our advice relates to how long they have worked for their employer. It appears that the legislative change in 2013 has not reached employees.

A great number of employment claims that can be made against your employer require a minimum of two years’ service with that company.

Without minimum service, the relationship between employer and employee is mainly bound by the terms of the employment contract.

This means before you reach that key point, your employer can (subject to the full circumstances):

Dismiss you on notice;

  • without a hearing
  • without warning
  • without giving a particular reason

For an unfair dismissal claim or a claim for constructive dismissal (where you quit) you must have two years’ service with your employer.

The only caveat to the service requirement is that certain matters don’t require a minimum amount of service.

These include:

  • discrimination- for example, if you are dismissed because you are having time off due to a disability,
  • asserting a statutory right – such as requests for rest breaks during your shifts, which are dismissed,
  • maternity leave – having a request for maternity leave dismissed or being ‘made redundant’ as a result.

If you need advice on any employment-related matters, contact Beswicks Legal on 01782 205000 or email laura.franklin@beswicks.com.