Can I claim unfair dismissal?

I had to leave my job because I was harassed and bullied. Can I claim unfair dismissal and get some support with my mortgage repayments?

It sounds like you’ve been through a tough time recently – bullying at work is very unpleasant. Remember that harassment is a criminal offence, whether it occurs in the workplace or on the street, and your employer has a responsibility to ensure that this behaviour doesn’t take place at work. If you haven’t already taken this issue up with your former employer, try to be brave and face the issue now.

The first thing to do is to look at your contract of employment. The key point here is whether or not you have been unfairly treated, so have a good read through your contract and then consult with a trade union or employee representative, such as your former manager or HR department.

For advice of a more legal nature, you could talk to an employment law advisor at your local Citizens Advice Bureau. You may also wish to contact Acas, the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service. They can advise on many aspects of employment and give you further advice on what legal options you may have.

Regarding your mortgage payments and general living costs, a wide range of benefits may be available depending on your household income and savings, including Income Support, Council Tax Benefit and Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI).

To investigate the range of benefits available, have a look at the information on the Department for Work and Pensions website. also has a detailed section on benefits, outlining the range of financial support available from the Government and how to apply for it.

If you have taken out Mortgage Payment Protection Insurance (MPPI) you should speak to your insurer as soon as possible to check if the policy will pay out, and what you have to do to make a claim. It may also be useful to speak to an advisor with your mortgage lender to see if they can be flexible with your current repayment arrangements, or offer additional support to ease your financial worries.

Answered by bss on 25-Sep-2012

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