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Handling grievances

Table of contents

Handling grievances
Introduction Grievance procedures and the employment contract Setting out your grievance procedure The statutory grievance procedures Preparing for a grievance hearing Holding a grievance hearing Appeals against grievance decisions Helplines Related guides on businesslink.gov.uk Related web sites you might find useful

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Created by Business Link on 16 September 2009 14:43 You can personalise content from the Business Link website and download it in PDF format. This is a free service

Handling grievances | Created by Business Link on 16 September 2009 14:43 è Crown copyright 2007

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Handling grievances

Subjects covered in this guide

Introduction
Introduction Grievance procedures and the employment contract Setting out your grievance procedure The statutory grievance procedures Preparing for a grievance hearing Holding a grievance hearing Appeals against grievance decisions Helplines Related guides on businesslink.gov.uk Related web sites you might find useful Even in well-run businesses, it may sometimes be necessary to deal with employees' grievances. Therefore it's crucial that you have written grievance procedures. If problems do arise, these procedures should help you and your employee resolve them within the workplace. They should also ensure that you deal with employees' grievances fairly. Your rules and procedures should be set out in writing and follow the good-practice principles set out in the Acas code of practice on disciplinary and grievance procedures. Failure to meet either of these requirements may result in extra compensation for the employee if they succeed in a tribunal claim. This guide outlines what you need to put in your procedures and how to handle grievances issues in practice.

You can find this guide by navigating to: Home > Employing people > Disciplinary problems, disputes and grievances > Handling grievances

Grievance procedures and the employment contract
By law, you must inform each employee of: • the name of the person to whom they should apply to seek redress for a grievance • how they should make this application This information can be included in the employee's written statement or the written statement may refer the employee to a document where they may read it, eg in a Handling grievances | Created by Business Link on 16 September 2009 14:43 è Crown copyright 2007 Page 2

Handling grievances

staff handbook. If you fail to provide this information to an employee, they could be awarded two or four weeks' pay - but only if they succeed in another employment tribunal claim against you, eg unlawful discrimination. The contractual status of grievance procedures Your grievance procedure does not automatically form part of an employment contract. Therefore, an employee cannot claim breach of contract if you fail to follow it. However, if you choose to make your procedure contractual and you fail to follow it when dealing with a grievance, the employee could bring a breach-of-contract claim against you. See our guide on the employment contract or use our interactive tool to create a written statement of employment - Opens in a new window.

skilled staff through resignation. It will also help you successfully defend any claim for: • constructive dismissal - see our guide on dismissal • unlawful discrimination - see our guide on how to prevent discrimination and value diversity The duty to provide a grievance procedure You must provide each of your employees with a written grievance procedure. Your procedure should follow the good-practice principles set out in the Acas code of practice on disciplinary and grievance procedures. If you unreasonably fail to follow the code and the issue ends up at an employment tribunal, the tribunal could increase the employee's compensation by up to 25 per cent. Read dispute resolution guidance on the Acas website - Opens in a new window....
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