Letter to Ms Maria Fernandes
from Bulfin & Company, Employment
We have been instructed on behalf of the above-mentioned
in relation to her employment with your firm.
We are instructed that our client became ill earlier
this year as a result of considerable stress and pressure which
she suffered in the course of her employment. Our client commenced
a period of sick leave on 15th May, 2000 and has been unable to
return to work since. You have been supplied with the relevant
We have taken full instructions in this matter and
have seen all relevant correspondence passing between yourself
and our client's husband. We can see that our client claims that
her ill-health has been brought about through the unreasonable
demands made upon her in the course of her employment and your
lack of regard for the duty of care owed to her as an employee.
Our client's current position is that she is neither fit to return
to work for the foreseeable future nor can she see herself returning
to your employment given your treatment of her. We can also see
from the correspondence that our client's claims are not admitted
by you and we do not doubt that if this matter were brought before
an Employment Tribunal by way of a constructive dismissal claim,
the case would be strenuously defended. For the record, we have
also advised our client with regard to potential personal injury
and Disability Discrimination Act claims.
However, our purpose in writing to you at the present
time is to explore the possibility of resolving this matter amicably.
Quite obviously, even if our client were fully recovered from
ill-health, it would not be possible for her to return to her
former employment, given the size of your business and the fact
that she would have to work under the same, if not more strained,
conditions. We would also have thought it in your interest to
resolve the matter speedily. Although our client is in receipt
only of Statutory Sick Pay, this is a commitment that you will
be required to make for several weeks, at the same time as incurring
the cost of temporary replacements to cover our client's position.
We understand that you currently employ three agency workers to
cover our client's previous workload. Additionally, we are aware
of your high profile within the Law Society and that of your husband,
and would have thought that you would prefer to deal with this
matter in a discreet way, rather than publicly in the Employment
Tribunal. Please be assured that by referring to this fact, we
are not making any veiled threat or other intimation. We are simply
stating the facts. It is fair to say, however, that if this matter
can be resolved amicably, our client would be prepared to sign
a Compromise Agreement containing relevant confidentiality clauses.
At this stage, we simply wish to put forward the
idea of exploring settlement and we would not be so presumptuous
as to put forward any proposals until receiving a favourable indication
from you. However, we can indicate our client would be looking
for a termination payment and a reference as part of any termination
We would be obliged to receive your early response
as a speedy conclusion to this matter would, without question,
aid our client's recovery.
11 July 2000