Free employment advice
The Bureau deals with a wide range of employment problems the most common of those presented by clients are:
- Holiday Pay
- Entitlements to Bank Holidays
- Redundancy – including period of notice; selection procedures; time off for looking for another job; redundancy pay
- Dismissal because of sickness
- Telling employers about a criminal record
Rights at work
Your rights depend on:
Statutory rights – legal rights based on laws passed by Parliament the following are examples of statutory rights:
- The right to a written statement of the terms of employment within 2 months of starting work.
- The right to an itemised pay slip from the day the employee starts work.
- The right to be paid at least the national minimum wage – There are different levels of NMW, depending on your age and whether you are an apprentice. The current rates (from 1 October 2013) are:
£6.31 – the main rate for workers aged 21 and over
£5.03 – the 18-20 rate
£3.72 – the 16-17 rate for workers above school leaving age but under 18
£2.68 – the apprentice rate, for apprentices under 19 or 19 or over and in the first year of their apprenticeship
(If you are of compulsory school age you are not entitled to the NMW. Some of your other employment rights are also different.)
- The right to paid holiday. Full time employees are entitled to at least 28 days per year. Part time employees are entitled to a pro rata amount.
- There are many statutory rights see www.adviceguide.org.uk/work
Contractual rights – an agreement between employer and employee, could be a written document or a verbal agreement. In addition, the contract of employment will also include custom and practice agreements. These are how things are usually done in the workplace, for example, the employer gives staff a half-day off to do Christmas shopping. Even if this is not mentioned in the contract of employment, this will form part of the contract as it is the usual practice.
Employment contracts cannot take away rights you have by law. An example of this is if you work for 5 days a week and your employment contract states that your holiday entitlement is 3 weeks paid holiday per year (15 days), by law you are entitled to 5.6 week (28 days) paid holiday per year. The part of your contract about holidays is void and does not apply. The right to 28 days’ holiday applies instead.
If your contract gives you greater rights than you have under law, for example your contract gives you 6 weeks’ paid holiday per year your employment contract will apply instead.
For further information about employment rights visit: www.adviceguide.org.uk/work
You could also take a look at the following leaflets produce by the Citizens Advice Bureau:
Accessing our employment advice services
If you wish to find out more for yourself, you can visit our self help website here: http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/england/work_e.htm