Nelson woman awarded £49k after taking former workplace to employment tribunal

A Nelson woman has been awarded £49,000 after taking her former workplace to an employment tribunal.
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Miss Sheree Somers (33) made the claim against her former employer, Pendle-based Utility Renewals Limited, which has since gone into voluntary liquidation.

Following a hearing at Manchester Employment Tribunal, Employment Judge Mark Butler said the respondent (Utility Renewals Limited) made unlawful deductions from the claimant’s wages.

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The judge awarded Miss Somers, who was an account manager for the company, the gross sum of £49,106.69 in respect of unlawful deductions from wages.

Sheree SomersSheree Somers
Sheree Somers

The respondent must also pay the claimant the gross sum of £288.46 in respect of unpaid holiday pay. A claim for constructive dismissal was dismissed by the judge.

Speaking to the Burnley Express after the decision, mother-of-one Miss Somers said the last two years had caused her “an anxiety overload” but said she was pleased with the judgement.

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She said: “It has been the worst two years of my life. I had worked at Utility Renewals for 11 years and became their top sales agent.

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"When lockdown hit, the company sent all staff home not letting any of us know whether we were going to be paid our commission/wages which we received at the end of every month. Commissions are paid on the same day but the sales are two months in arrears as the company has already been paid for these.

"I was not paid a single penny of my commission but was paid a furlough wage leaving me way short to pay my bills. In short, I was not paid anniversary payments by my employers who had suppliers hadn’t paid. I proved this wrong in court.

"I had to resign from the company in September, 2020, because I couldn’t afford to pay mill bills or mortgage. I am pleased it’s over because it has been an anxiety overload the last two years. I am however, angry that the company went into voluntary liquidation.

"It has left my life in ruins as even now I am in debt with family and friends and I am currently chasing liquidators for the monies now awarded and owed.”