The Mirror reports a 76-year-old man in Suffolk has won over £13,000 in compensation for constructive dismissal after his boss said he'd rather "kill" him than pay him redundancy.
Tom Major worked for Jeff Hall, 46, owner of the construction firm 'Hall Contracts'. The firm had around 150 bricklayers on its books -- all agency workers -- and Mr Major was the only staff employee.
Mr Major claimed Mr Hall asked him to retire even though he wanted to continue working.
Instead of following the correct legal retirement procedure, Mr Hall just posted Mr Major his P45. Then, when Mr Major phoned the company to ask what was going on, he was told that he wasn't needed any more.
Sensibly, Mr Major sought legal advice and was told that he was entitled, at a minimum, to redundancy pay.
But Mr Hall immediately back-tracked on his decision to sack him and said "I will kill you before you get a penny of redundancy from me".
He then appears to have made life uncomfortable for Mr Major after he returned to work. For example, he asked Mr Major to sort out three tonnes of scaffolding without help, which the employment tribunal ruled was "a pointless job" since it had already been sorted and counted.
The tribunal ruled that Mr Hall's intent in asking Mr Major to do the work was to persuade him to stop working of his own volition and therefore lose his entitlement to redundancy pay.
Mr Hall disputes this. He said he always treated Mr Major well and "it was us that got shafted" after he resigned.
The tribunal disagreed, however, and ordered that Hall Contracts should pay Mr Major significant compensation totalling £13,138.
- "I'll kill you before paying you redundancy" says building firm boss (Mirror)
- Constructive dismissal law articles (Findlaw.co.uk)
- Constructive dismissal law news (The Solicitor)
- Employment law Q&A (Community)
- Find an employment solicitor (Contact Law)