Help! I’ve been working as a data administrator for the last year and a half working Monday – Wednesday inclusive (I volunteer for a local charity on Thursday and Friday) and recently received a jury summons for a two week period. I tried to excuse myself but the Court have refused it, I didn’t feel too bad as there is a quiet point in work during work at the time when I’m due to be there. When I told my boss he got really angry and then fired me because he said he was fed up of me only working 3 days a week when everyone else does a full week and that the jury service was the last straw. When I’ve spoken to my friends they’ve all said that I can’t do anything because I wasn’t employed for two years. Is this true?
Jane – Leeds
Your friends are half right; normally to be eligible to claim for unfair dismissal you need to have at least two years’ continuous service. However, there are a number of circumstances in which this two year requirement isn’t required and it appears that your situation may fulfil one or more of these because the dismissal is related to:
Your status as a part time worker; and/or
In connection with carrying out jury service
Further information about the qualifying period for unfair dismissal can be found here.
To be successful in a claim for unfair dismissal you would also need to be able to show that there was no fair reason for the dismissal and/or that the dismissal was not fair in all the circumstances (see our blog on unfair dismissal).
If you want to discuss this in greater detail, please give our specialist employment department a call on 0113 244 9931.