Constructive Dismissal Claims
If you have been forced to quit your job due to breach of your contract by your employer, you may be entitled to claim compensation for constructive dismissal. Constructive dismissal claims can be complicated and contentious, so we recommend consulting with our expert employment lawyers at the earliest opportunity.
With our specialist expertise in pursuing constructive dismissal claims for employees of all levels, we can help you achieve fair compensation faster and usually without the need for an Employment Tribunal. This can save you time and stress, making your life easier and allowing you to move on sooner.
We work with clients all over England and Wales, so wherever you are, our experienced constructive dismissal solicitors can ensure you do not miss out on any compensation you are entitled to if you have been forced to leave your job through no fault of your own.
What counts as constructive dismissal?
Constructive dismissal occurs when the employee resigns in response to a breach of an important term of their contract of employment by their employer and the employee is then entitled to treat themselves as having been dismissed.
The employer’s conduct that leads to the breach of contract is usually called, “repudiatory conduct” (as set in section 95 of the Employment Rights Act 1996).
Examples of Conduct Justifying Constructive Dismissal
Examples of conduct entitling the employee to resign include:
- Not being paid
- Being demoted without any valid reason
- Violence towards the employee by their colleagues
- Being made to work in dangerous conditions
The breach may be one serious incident or a series of incidents with the most recent incident being regarded as the “final straw”.
The employee must also show that they have not done anything that could be construed as them having accepted that breach, such as not complaining or only complaining a long time after the breach occurred or first occurred.
What compensation can you claim for constructive dismissal?
There are three main types of compensation for constructive dismissal that you may be entitled to claim:
Compensation in lieu of notice
Where the employee’s claim for constructive dismissal is successful, the Employment Tribunal will award the employee compensation for their employment terminating without notice. This means the employee will receive their wages and any benefits as though they had worked through their notice period.
Additional constructive dismissal compensation
Further compensation for constructive dismissal is only available where the employee has worked for their employer continuously for at least 1 year (2 years for employees starting new jobs after 6 April 2012) and the Employment Tribunal will have to consider whether the dismissal was fair or unfair and whether the employer acted reasonably.
Where available, this additional compensation will be calculated based on the employee’s age, salary and length of service. The current amount is £430 per week for each completed year (1/2 a week’s pay for employees aged 21 and under and 1 1/2 weeks’ pay for employees aged 41 and over) up to a maximum of 20 years which amounts to £12,900.
Loss of Earnings Compensation
Following a successful Employment Tribunal claim for constructive dismissal, employees can also be awarded compensation for any financial losses they have incurred as a result of the dismissal.
Factors the Employment Tribunal will consider when decided the level of award include:
- The employee’s loss of earnings from the date of dismissal to the date of the hearing
- Any expected future loss of earnings (if relevant)
- Loss of benefits such as private healthcare and company car
If the employee has subsequently started a new job that is less well paid, they may be entitled to receive compensation equal to the difference in salary between the two jobs.
However, where the employee has started a new job with pay and benefits equal to or better than the job from which they were dismissed, compensation will only be available up to the date when they started this new employment.
In either case, the compensatory award is capped at £72,000.
Time limits for constructive dismissal claims
You will normally have 3 months after the termination of your employment to bring a claim for breach of contract to an Employment Tribunal.
However, if you choose to deal with the claim through Acas Early Conciliation this deadline can be extended.
Why choose our constructive dismissal solicitors in London and the South East?
Our employment lawyers are highly experienced in dealing with constructive dismissal claims for a wide range of employees, having a strong track record of securing favourable outcomes for our clients both at Employment Tribunals and through voluntary settlements.
Our team includes members of the Employment Lawyers Association (ELA) reflecting our leading expertise in all areas of UK employment law.
While we are based in the Greater London area, we help employees all over the country to secure compensation for constructive dismissal under even the most challenging circumstances.
Speak to our employment lawyers in London and South East England
For help making a constructive dismissal claim in London and the South East, please get in touch with our highly experienced employment law solicitors now.