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work problems by TIGGERLESS

36 REPLIES 36
tinfish
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Ladies

Thanks for your input, I was paid full pay for 6 weeks and then went to SSP only in our company handbook it states that any other paymjents would be "managers disgression", I am a Manager at the company and this isnt true I have never known anyone in my company (perhaps apart from Directors and that would have been silent) been paid more. Infact last year my husband had an accident and his company paid him full pay for 5 months and 1/2 pay for a month and then he returned back to work, when I told my boss this (before BC) she said we were luck and my comapny wouldnt pay that!!!

I have phoined the a hlelpline to see if my wages were reduced if I could clain anything and they told me unless my OH was on minimum wages we would not be able to claim anything. The thing that really gets me is firstly when applying for a job you dont like to ask too much about sick pay.

We live to our means (no one elses fault) so not much savings, I rung and asked about benefits and they said unless my OH is on minimum wages we dont qualify. It does me cross and I am now at least £900 per month down and we still have a have a mortgage to pay, we cant claim on the mortgage as this is my second dose of the big C and the first time my OH couldnt handle money then( 12 years ago with 2 young daqughters) and just didnt pay anything for a few months so we had to get a second mortgage and they wouldnt insure us for critical illness (our fault burying our heads in the sand)

We are managing OK but now I feel no loyalty to my company (which is sad as I do enjoy my job).

I will look on the site and try again perhaps I just got a "jobs worth"!!!

Hope everyone's treatment etc is going well

Lesley

veeluz
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi girls, Lesley and Sue

I joined the earlier discussion re: Tiggerless but i am really surprised that there are still people or companies that has very little compassion or consideration of people who are genuinely sick.It is appalling.

I was off sick for a total of 18 months from day of operation on 6 Dec2005 (2 years today) and went back to work 12 Mar 2007.I am on a part time basis and I must say,it is just enough for my physical exhaustion,not pushing myself to far...Whilst off sick , my company has paid me in full for the first 6months,in which 28 weeks of that is part SSP then they had to transfer the payment over to our Insurance Income protection which paid half of my salary,net of the Govt Incapacity benefit allowance.Cancer patients who has chemo & radiotherapy treatments fall under the Disability Act and you can apply accordingly and be assessed on the telephone and fill in a form.Do access the website for the Department of Works and Pension....I received the benefit whilst i was off sick and signed of by my GP but if you are still receiving an income, they will reduce and adjust your PAYE taxcode as a way of reclaiming the benefit back that i have received whilst i was off sick.Currently, my taxcode is reduced until April5 2007.It is worth looking into the website and also enquire on your local jobcentre where they will be able to put you in touch with the right department.I hope this helps.

Rose

ForumMember
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Lesley

Just read back a bit of this thread and realised you said you were off work in August, if you haven't had a period of sick in the previous 8 weeks it may be that you haven't had enought SSP.

Here is a good link to the Department for Work and Pensions on SSP
http://www.dwp.gov.uk/lifeevent/benefits/statutory_sick_pay.asp

and another link to the Revenue, this is a help book for employers
http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/employers/employee_sick.htm
take care
Sue

ForumMember
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Lesley

I'm sorry your company are being like that with you. Did your HR get them sorted out with pay, and what about statutory sick pay? In a period of Incapity to Work, you can have up to 28 weeks SSP, not a huge amount of money but something. there is something called a linking period, which means if you have been off sick within 56 days then it would be linked. I was told by a friend who works in HR that we come under protection of Disability Act, I'm not sure what that means in reality, but have seen it mentioned on this forum as well.

take care
Sue

tinfish
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Sue

Your boss sounds nice but I'm not sure mine will be so good, when she came round to see me she said rhat I looked good from the nexk up and you wouldn't know I had had cancer!!!!!

Now however with a bald head 1 boob and a line in the other I'm not sure myself. Saying that however my company are really bad with people when they sick. They also stopped paying me after 6 weeks with no notice and I thought that as they hadn't notified me I was going to be OK I emailed them and then surprise surprise I get a phone call answering a couple of other questions I had asked (HR rang) at no time did they ask me how things were going.

I feel once all my treatment is over I may look for another job

Thanks

Lesley

ForumMember
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Lesley50

I think I gave the wrong impression of my boss. She has been lovely, she hadn't had a member of staff go through a long illness and certainly not breast cancer so she wasn't sure what to offer. She kept asking me if I was ok, although I am tired I think if I didn't work I would worry about lots of things.

You are right to listen to consultant and your body. It was scary wondering whether I should go back to work in November(my doctor wanted a longer phased return). My boss said to me when I was having chemo to consider when I was working through it (with the second lot of chemo) whether I was giving my body time to recouperate so she suggested that maybe I should consider staying off ill throughout the second chemo and the rads. I took her advice and she was right. I think I didn't want to admit I wasn't capable of working. silly really.

Hope the chemo is not taking the toll too much, only one more.
take care
Sue

tinfish
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Sue and everyone else

I am worried my boss will be like yours and I work full time I think she will probably expect me to be back to normal (whatever that is) with 2 weeks (but thats not what I will want or my consultant ) I wont be going back until March so theres plenty of time to decide what I want to do.

I had chemo yesterday but later in the day as my line wouldnt flush so had to have an xray and then a drug through it.

Lesley

ForumMember
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Everyone

Hope you don't mind me joining in. There is a good information on the ACAS website in regard to holiday. there is an ongoing court case in the european court as to whether you can take holiday whilst sick, and I think to decide if you can carry un-taken holiday into a new holiday year. Working Time Regulations state that you should acrue holiday whilst sick, they also say that you should not take them into another holiday year and that you should only get paid if you terminate your contract. I think they also say that if you have taken the statutory minimum holiday in the year (now 4.8 weeks) then it would be up to the company and employee to agree what happens to the un-taken holiday.

http://www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=806

this link will take you to the ACAS website and the information on holidays.

I returned to work on a phased return, my doctor wouldn't sign me back to work unless she put on it that I was going to do a phased return. My Doctor said as I had been off work for a long period I needed it and she was right. I have to admit my boss broached phased return first, but she wanted me to work 2 days one week and then back to 5 days the next. Everyone is different, I did 2 days first week, 3 days second week, 4 days third week and finally 5 days. I only work part time and I have to admit I did have a sleep after working today.

Good wishes for your chemo tomorrow.
take care
Sue

tinfish
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Everyone

Hope you are all well

Sharon,, thanks for your answer I emailed HR saying I was dissapointed that they hadnt imformed me that I would now only be paid SSP (some of my friends told me that they should inform you). My pension I have suspended until I rreturn to work and my holiday they are paying in Decembers wages. The manager wasnt in when I sent the email but my Manager told someone in HR to ring me and let me know what was what, although I couldnt hear him and I think they had me on loud speaker .

I was invited to a Managers lunch which was today changed at short notice from this Friday and I felt like a complete fish out of water I wasnt introduced to the |HR manager and another Manager from a different area and it was only when I asked a colleague did I find out who they were!!!

I am now dreading going back to work and am wondering what sort of treatment I will get ( I want to go back staggered and maybe in ther future part time)

My husband has told me I am a better person than they are and that they probably dont know how to talk to people who have had cancer !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sorry to have another moan about work

Off tomorrow for chemo number 4 and only 2 to go (trying to be positive)

Lesley

TIGGERLESS
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi All,

Thanks for advice 🐵

I am not sure how I am going to 'play' the work front situation yet. a) keep my head down or, b) kick 'A' - this depends on how I feel physically and emotionally - I wont really know that until I'm back and have worked a full week - I hope its the kick 'A' ...... Id better fish out a pair of steel top caps; "if a jobs worth doing its worth doing well :o)"

Have a good week - Hope every-ones treatment goes okay and not too uncomfortable, and hope you are all done and dusted by Christmas/ A new year -

Biggest hugs,
Caroline

thetunnery
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Lesley

I can try to give you some guidance on your questions but some of it will depend on the policy of your company on some of the things.

In terms of your pension, what kind of pension is it? If it is a personal/stakeholder type it should be possible to reduce your payments. However, you may want to check if there are any employer contributions that are linked to the amount you pay. Is it based on the amount of pay you receive. You probably do have to check with your HR people about the rules of the plan.

With regard to the carry over of holiday, are there any rules that your company has about carry over to the next year. If policy allows you to do so then you should do so. Often companies don't pay for holiday not taken but there is no harm in making a special request.

I am not an expert on SSP but I believe there is a maximum number of weeks you can be paid it. However check again what the company policy is. Do they have a "sick year" so that you can start to be paid company sick pay again once that year period is up

I hope that has given you a bit of a steer as to how to approach your company

Good luck
Sharon x

tinfish
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Ladies

This thread is very interesting, I have been off work since August and yesterday received my wage slip without warning I am now only being paid SSP (although I thought this would happen). I am going to email my HR department as I have a couple of questions but before I do you ladies will probably be able to answer them.

As I am only being paid SSP should I have had my full pension contribution taken (every penny counts)? can I defer paying pension until I return on full pay

I should have been on holiday during this month and have also booked some days off during christmas, my company will probably not want me to carry these over, should I get paid and when??

As I willbe off for at least a couple of months next year will I still be paid SSP or will the pay restart and then SSP start again

My Manager has been to see me once but I have not had any contact via HR (is this normal?)

Thanks

Lesley
xx

thetunnery
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Caroline

It doesn't matter that you don't have a written contract (although legally you should have a written record of your terms and conditions). The fact you work there and they pay you means you have a contract. So if custom and practice says you have 24 days a year holiday, for example, you are accruing holiday at 2 days per month. The law would be on your side.

I find it very sad when I read on this site how many employers are so ignorant of the basics of employment law. It's people like you who have to do all the running to get your rights. My company have been terrific. I am the HR Director in Europe but everyone from my boss in London to my HR boss and her colleagues in the USA have been so supportive. I have been doing some work from home so as far as they have been concerned I am not off sick but working from home although to the limits that treatment and my energy has allowed. They have insisted that I should be on full pay since I started treatment on 16th November. I just wish all employers could be so enlightened

All the best
Sharon x

TIGGERLESS
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Sharon,

Thanks for reply

I have no written contract. Their insurance is with the NFU. I believe we are April to April. I was off in June - I say from the 18th the say from the 13th. I am due back at the start of December. I guess I have to just wait and see what they say.

I am intending to go back to work there until I feel fit enough to move on - I am despondent regarding certain peoples attitude there and don't feel that I 'want' to try to repair the damage this has done as far as work relationships are concerned.

Wishing you the very best in life.

Kind regards
Caroline 🐵

thetunnery
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Tiggerless

There has been a case in an employment tribunal that ruled that someone who was off for the whole of a holiday year due to sickness would not be entitled to any holiday accrual/pay. However if you have worked during your company's holiday year (however they calculate it) you are by law eligible for, originally 20, since 1st October 24 paid holidays per year (including bank holidays). It is not totally clear if you would be entitled to more if you have a contractual entitlement to more holiday. I would argue that unless your contract specifies otherwise, you should continue to accrue holidays

Good luck
Sharon x

TIGGERLESS
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi there,
Can anyone advise on Holiday & sick pay problems:

JUNE 7th (breast examination re lump at hospital) 8th (day off) & 15th (in for diagnosis) 18th day off & 19th B.C. op.
I have always had health appointments as holiday (to keep them personal).
My Co. say because I did not say at the end of June that my 3 days were holiday they are classed as my sickleave re Breast cancer. They also say "We are currently awaiting adice as to whether annual leave can be accrued during a period of long term sicknes and will advise you in due course!...... I am due back to work in a weeks time without my holiday ... Can anyone advise me PLEASE
Many thanks,
TIGGERLESS

TIGGERLESS
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Anne,

Sorry your having probs with soreness - and worried about skin...... I remember mine looking 'thin' and delicate and I was worried about it - it used to be very itchy and sometimes I'd forget and scratch .....Ooouch, cold aqueous cream slapped all over was only relief.....Maybe other have ideas that have helped them...... I hope it gets better for you soon. My breast continues to improve- but its still lumpy and sore at times as is under arm at times too...... However, Im sure it will improve further as I go along as its not as bad as it was a couple of months ago! 🐵

Sending you my very best - all over by Christmas....... 🐵 xx caroline

Normski
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Thanks Sharon . I'll just go in and give them one of my withering looks!

Norma x

thetunnery
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Norma

I think you will find that there are no laws on carrying forward holiday. It is down to individual companies to have a policy on what they will allow.

Sharon x

Normski
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Anyone know where I can find the info on carrying leave forward ,albeit only 1 week? I want to have this info when I go to see my employers.

Thanks
Norma xx

TIGGERLESS
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Thanks Everyone,

I am feeling MUCH happier than when I first joined this site with fatigue, sobbing, pain, work problems and my 'coming to terms' with life after treatment! My mantra at that time being "I can't be what people need me to be"

To ANYONE NEW who has just joined and feeling low and confused : - The help and support on here is amazing! I'd recommend it to everyone who is struggling (generally, thats everyone with B.C). There is a light at the end of the tunnel 🐵
(It's now 3 months after my rads and I'm looking forward to Christmas and the New Year - Roll on 2008!).

Love & Best, Caroline xx

thetunnery
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Caroline

Just to echo what Rose says, even if you don't have a written contract, you are still contracted to the company because you have been working there. THey are in breach of the law if they have not issued you with a written record of your terms and conditions. After 14 years, they have to give you 12 weeks notice (maximum statutory amount). You still have all your rights

Good luck
Sharon x

veeluz
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Carolie

Well,it just shows that when 1 door shuts,another one opens.Now,you have control of your work situation.I think that even if you do not have a contract but it is deemed to have one after 13 weeks probationary period.Either parties can terminate the employment.For it to last for 14 years....its well over the 13 week period.Best to get advice on a Human Resource point of view as to uptodate employment laws.Citizens advice Bureau can perhaps help too.

Take care

ROSE

TIGGERLESS
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Update on work issues:

I mentioned to a co worker that the boss needed to read the DDA information; as it was important for the company and myself that we were aware of the regulations. I am not sure if he read it as he is unwell and not at work - hasn't been for a few weeks now - However, he did apologise to me via phone and asked if we could wipe slate clean - In the interim I found a position elsewhere, which starts around February/March if I wish to take it - so I now have a feeling of some 'control' over my decisions and my life is coming back! - I am due to go back to work in December (I am still waiting to find out if I have any holiday as I have only taken 3 days this year (and they were due to B.C) - I believe its all very individual regarding company regs and I don't actually have a contract only that I've been there 14 years. They are 'looking into it' for me and I wait with baited breath! 🐵

The very BEST of wishes to you all,

Big hugs,
Caroline

veeluz
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Caroline,
I hope you find ways and more support regarding your work situation.Read more about on the governent Disability Act as cancer (with chemo & radiotherapy) is covered.

Yes,the wedding was July 2005,2years ago,3months before i was diagnosed last 9nov2005.That was the happiest day of my life.At least I had my big wedding before the Bc has choosen me.Well,it makes us all a stronger and better person after this journey.

Regards

Rose

TIGGERLESS
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Rose,
Thanks for that, it was very kind of you - sounds like your employers were very understanding and helpful 🐵

Hope the wedding went well 🐵 best of luck to you both
Well done for reaching the otherside of the tunnel :o))

xx Big hug, Caroline

veeluz
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Tiggerless.I hope you are feeling better.Dont get too stressed or down by this issue of work.I just want to share my case in the last 2 years.I have been with my employer for 10yrs now.I was working 5 days in year 2005 but then i shifted to 3 days a week for my own personal reasons...feeling too stressed and overworked,then we were getting married in 6 months time.3 months after the wedding,i was diadnosed with BC.So i need to go off sick to focus on my BC and treatments.We hava a company Group Protection Insurance,covering long term illness which pays 70% of the latest salary after the 13th week of illness.This helped me to focus on my treatments without the added stress of finding out where & how to pay mortgage & bills.There are medical forms to fill in and my employers also help me to fill in the Government form for Disability,for which you may qualify for allowance..So,whilst i was having my treatments, I was under the Insurance payroll of course no holidays accrued.I returned to work on Mar 2007 after 18mths of absence,without affecting my length of service.I returned to my 3 day working week and salary and holidays are on pro rata.I must say though that my PAYE code allowance had to be reduced so that the govt can claim back the benefit that they gave me when i was ill,spread across the taxable year.My employers had been understanding on the importance of getting through the illness and making sure that I will be the judge of my strengths and limitations as to my recovery period.So far,9months on, I feel im ready to increase my working hours from 22.5 to 28hrs from 1Jan2008.

I hope this helps even just for information.

Regards

Rose

TIGGERLESS
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi EVERYONE,

Its great to know I have support and understanding as this breast cancer thing seems to be a bit of a lonely business! xx thanks..

I have spoken to CAB and I could take things further, They have said I could go for constructive dismissal; which is where I resign and leave a letter making it clear it is due to my bosses behaviour regarding reasonable adjustments (or lack of), this I would do, but at the moment I don't have the emotional strength for a battle that I am told is difficult to win, and as I now live on my own I have a mortgage to pay etc. I have to support myself and have a full time job to do that;

The CAB suggested I ask the Big Cheese for an 'informal' meeting and state clearly my requirements and provide information regarding the DDA - as they feel he may not be aware that I am covered by this - Also I have looked into: Whilst I am considered 'full time' by my employer I actually work 6 hours - this means I am not entitled to any breaks..... Also I am looking in to my holiday pay entitlement as it depends of WHEN the working year starts within each company. I believe mine is April - April, and as I was on sick leave in June I may not have any holiday entitlement?? - I don't really know about this - I have written to the company accountant to ask her how much holiday time I am entitled to, I await her reply! - I am thinking of using it as a gradual return to work.

If after the 'informal meeting' I feel that things have NOT gone well, I should contact them and they will arrange for me to see their solicitor - they took copies of the two letters he wrote to me and a copy of the letter I sent in reply - I really hope it doesn't go that far, as it would be very sad after 14 years if it came to that!

One thing I do now know, emotional energy is very draining! - And being REALLY honest about this, I felt so much better when I read your replies, so, BIGGEST of hugs to you all xx Caroline

AnneG
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Liz

NHS national terms and conditions allow you to take one week over to the next leave year only. I have been off since April so still have my full 6 weeks to take. I intend to use these weeks towards the end of my time off instead of sick leave, after I finish radiotherapy, as they will be at full pay rather than half pay and I would otherwise lose them anyway.

Anne

ForumMember
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi - very interested in this thread. Think it's awful they are treating you like that.

A lady in my office came back on phased return but had to use her annual leave entitlement ! Surely that's not right.

I have at least 5 weeks annual leave this year and wonder if I am entitled to take these over to next year (I am hoping to return to work about March/April as on chemo and then 5 weeks radiotherapy and a year of herceptin) and don't really want to use them for phased return. Would love a holiday! I work for the NHS as a medical secretary and don't feel I could go back full time with the doctor I work for. He is very nice but demanding and can see me getting stressed.

Liz xx

buff40
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

hi there
i wonder if it might help to ask your GP to put on your return to work sick note that you should return on reduced hours in a phased return.....some GPs are happy to do this although won't go any further with advice to you employer. They may know where you an access a vocational rehabilitation team with an occupational therapsit who can support you in a phased return increasing your work in a graded way that helps you regain strenght and confidence.

Also, perhaps you might wish to send a letter to your employer formally requesting a graded return to work, suggesting what this might be, timescales etc. I was exhausted after rads and my GP suggested I went back for half days Mon, Wed and Fri for a couple of weeks, then full M. W, F for couple of weeks before doing a 5 day week...you could point out that this would get you back to the workplace earlier as you are not fit for full-time work just now, assist you in regaining your strength and getting up to speed on any changes etc, and you would hope to be fit for fulltime work again in 4 to 6 weeks. If you are unable to do this I would suggest your GP sign you off for a few weeks more and you get in touch with your Access to Work team at your jobcentre plus who may be able to advise you as you are 'covered' by the Disability Discrimination Act. If for example they might do a phased return to work for someone else then you might feel they are discriminating against you......or, if they fail to make a reasonable adjustment for you in terms of your condition, and i think that a phased return to work is not an unreasonable thing to ask, nor is no phone calls at home until you are filly recovered, you could take out a grievance.

Good luck and please do let us know how things go and what resources you find help.
Buff

BunnyMum
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

cancerbackup have a great pamphlet on your rights in the work place and what your boss etc should be doing to help you. Check on their website or give them a call.

As if life wasn't hard enough....?

love,
Jacki xx

ForumMember
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Caroline

You can also look on a website: www.pointofdiagnosis.org.uk which gives info on protection at work. It also covers information on the Disability Discrimination Act. I also used to be an HR manager and you should have a phased return to work as Anne says. They are in danger of discriminating you under the Disability Discrimination Act if they're not careful. Although you are not technically registered as 'disabled' you are protected under the above act against any discrimination not only in a work environment but also in education and housing situations.

They also have to make 'reasonable' adjustments (if necessary) to your work environment although this is a very grey area as 'reasonable' has many connotations!

Diane44
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

that's shocking the way your employer has treated you. Why should you look for another job when you already have one, the cheek of it !! Get some advice and don't let them walk all over you.

best of luck
Diane x

KIPPY
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi Caroline, AnneG. has it spot on they have not got a leg to stand on, i have just gone through the same with a company that i worked for for 13years, they came with all the high ideas that i return to work full time, etc etc, you could go to your local C.A.B. they are very clued up on this issue and should help you, please don't let your employer bully you, get the best advice you can CheersX

AnneG
Member

Re: work problems by TIGGERLESS

BC is a disability and your employer is required, by law, to make reasonable adjustments. Having a phased return to work makes sense for both you and your employer. If people rush back to their full hours after any long sickness absence, they are more likely to relapse and need more time off. Do you have a human resources manager to talk to? You may also have an occupational health service who can give an expert opinion on the best way to manage your return to work.

I work in HR and I am happy to advise you further. Just private message me if you want to.

Good luck
Anne

Moderator
Community Manager

work problems by TIGGERLESS

Hi all
I have reposted this in here to start a new thread for new user Caroline aka TIGGERLESS.

Best wishes
Lucy
Moderator
Breast Cancer Care

Hi, I finished my rads in early Sept. I tried to go back to work p/t basis last week, the stairs were difficult! (I work in an office), the phone systems had changed, as had many other things (all mid air at the moment), the boss was difficult and seemed indifferent to my situation - I requested a gradual increase in working hours (and no home phone calls from colleagues when I have been in work that morning) and possible do a half day at home too.....I received a letter 2 days later.....No I can't work from home, he could see no reason why I cant take work related phone calls at home, and don't come back until I am are fully fit......................I have been there for 14 years, I then received phone call requesting me on a day course in a weeks time! I feel totally lost and am looking for new job....I am scared that I wont be able to take on a new job let alone do the one I already have. I need to know there is a light at end of tunnel and its near! I cannot afford NOT to work, I have a mortgage and now live on own. Any suggestions to get me out of what feels like a big black hole.
Caroline x