Isabella's Story

Isabella had been working in a restaurant for a year when she was dismissed without pay or warning. The restaurant where she’d been working had to close during the Coronavirus crisis. Her employer said they might not reopen, and even if they did, they wouldn’t be able to keep everyone on. Isabella spoke her mind at work, and while some of her colleagues were furloughed, she was left with no income.

Her employer owed her two weeks’ pay in lieu of notice, her holiday pay, and the return of a ‘deposit’ unlawfully taken from her first seven weeks’ salary but claimed they couldn’t afford it. They also claimed their accountant was too busy to provide her with payslips they owed her.

We supported Isabella in making Universal Credit and Council Tax Support claims to access any benefits she would be entitled to.

We then advised her to send a formal email to her employer asking for pay in lieu of notice, holiday pay owed and the return of the deposit, and drafted this email for her.

When asked if she’d be happy for us to share her story under a different name, she said: “Yes of course you can share it. I’m so happy I decided to contact you – you did an amazing job. So please share it. I think a lot of people can relate to my experience. Thank you.”

Just over a week later, Isabella got in touch to update us on her employer’s response: