A claim for constructive dismissal can help you win compensation if you have been forced to quit your job against your will. It is different from wrongful dismissal, which occurs when an employer terminates an employee without notice or in breach of their contract. While the two tend to blend into one in employment tribunals, they are separate types of action. Understanding the difference between these claims can help you know whether or not you have a case worth filing.

To make a successful claim, it is essential to prove that the intolerable working conditions that forced you to resign were created by your employer and not by any independent factors. This will often require a series of incidents over an extended period of time. This can be challenging, and it is why it is important to document any inappropriate behaviour by your employer as you notice it. An employment lawyer can assist you with this.

An employer can create intolerable working conditions in a variety of ways, including demeaning treatment or making your job unbearable. This can include denying you promotion or paying you less than another worker, or it could be a hostile work environment where you are subject to bullying or harassment. It can also be an unreasonable demand on your time, such as failing to provide sufficient staff or expecting you to meet unrealistic sales targets.

You can also be constructively dismissed if you report an issue to your employer and they fail to take any action. This includes retaliation against workers who report sexual harassment, discrimination or worker safety issues. If you feel your workplace is unsafe, then you should seek legal advice as soon as possible.

Unfortunately, only about 5% of all claims for constructive dismissal are successful in tribunals. This is because many employers are able to show that the circumstances that led you to leave were not serious enough to justify your decision. They may also argue that you resigned without another job lined up, which could weaken your case.

Whether you have a good chance of winning a constructive dismissal claim depends on a number of factors, and you should speak to an employment legal matters attorney as soon as possible. Some of the most important considerations include whether you resigned after reporting the situation to your employer, how long it has been since the alleged misconduct occurred, and whether any evidence has been lost.

It is also important to note that you cannot make a claim for constructive dismissal if you have signed a settlement agreement with your employer. This can be a clause in an employment contract, and it is worth speaking to your solicitor about this before making any decisions. Ideally, you should report the situation to ACAS before resigning and then begin the process of starting an employment tribunal claim. Your union might be able to offer advice on this, or you can look at insurance policies that might cover the costs of going to court.