The Birmingham Post reports that 15 workers at delivery company TNT have commenced legal action after the firm imposed pay cuts at two depots - Atherstone and Kingsbury - in North Warwickshire.
The pay cuts total £110 a week in some cases.
What are my options if my employer cuts my pay without my consent?
- Obviously, you can accept the pay cut and carry on working.
- Alternatively, you can seek legal advice. A solicitor may advise you to:
- Carry on working, albeit under written protest making it clear that you do not accept the pay cut and are treating it as a breach of your employment contract. In these circumstances you retain the right to seek compensation and/or a declaration from the courts that your employer must abide by your original employment contract. Subject to meeting certain length of service requirements, you may also claim unfair dismissal.
- Quit and claim constructive dismissal. This is less likely, but possible in some situations.
As for the TNT workers, their lawyer Alan Lewis of Linder Myers Solicitors had this to say:
"The starting point is to recognise that an employment contract cannot be unilaterally varied by one party without the consent of the other.
"If an employer is contemplating reducing employees' salaries, then they would be best advised to attempt to seek agreement with their workforce so that such a change can be implemented by consent.
"In the current recession many employees are likely to agree to a reduction in salary if this is seen as an alternative to them being made redundant or placed under the threat of redundancy.
"The fact that employees can accept the new terms and conditions of employment but still pursue a claim for unfair dismissal is regularly overlooked by both employers and even some lawyers."
** Additional Information & Advice **
Alternatively, you may prefer to speak with an employment law solicitor.
You can find a solicitor in your area for free via solicitor matching services, which can also help you to understand the best course of action for your situation and whether you are ready to hire a solicitor.