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Employee fights for rights 'by the book' after being falsely accused of 'gross misconduct'

Reddit user Nicklo2k shared his story of winning a wrongful termination case by just being a really great, meticulous employee.

Employee fights for rights 'by the book' after being falsely accused of 'gross misconduct'
Image Source: RyanKing999 / Getty Images

Sometimes, capitalism does not win, and that is always something to celebrate. When Reddit user Nicklo2k was told he would be fired if he did not accept a massive pay cut after his company was bought by a larger firm, he decided to walk out of the business to which he had dedicated 14 years of his life. Taking to the Reddit group Malicious Compliance, he explained how he won the wrongful termination. His post has since gone viral, with dozens of fellow Reddit users praising him for his progressive thinking (and sincerely savoring the poetic justice he too was able to enjoy).



First, a little background about the circumstances of his employment and why he was wrongfully terminated in the first place. Nicklo2k wrote, "I worked for [a] company for 14 years. I loved working there for 12 of those years. I was the best employee when it came to delivering [our] product. I consistently got rave reviews from customers for my personal style when it came to delivering the product and executing the customer's vision. I got a huge amount of repeat business and I got a lot of new business through word of mouth with customers recommending the company based on their experiences with me. I liked the owner and I liked the manager. I liked all the staff who were around me. All in all it was a great job that I was really good at and took pride in." According to the user, the company had been doing well and expanded over the 12 years he had worked there. However, when the owner decided to sell off part of the company, the trouble began.


"[The owner] told me he would love for me to remain as his employee, but I would need to work from a different office," Nicklo2k shared. "The other option was to remain working from my current office but with a new boss. I chose the second option." The new boss eventually became the new owner, which came as a big surprise to the Reddit user and his fellow employees. She brought with her "sweeping staff changes," which resulted in never-before-seen increased staff turnover rates. The employee stated, "People left after a few months when they realised that the minimum wage they were being paid wasn't worth it." Then, he was given a letter "informing [him] of a disciplinary meeting to take place in a couple of days time." He was shocked.


"This knocked me for six," Nicklo2k explained. "I was the best employee. I read through her list of complaints about my performance and started working on my defence... Basically, she accused me of gross misconduct for breaking health and safety laws in the way I was delivering a product for a customer. I hadn't broken health and safety laws. I knew exactly what I was doing since, as I've mentioned already, I had been doing this for 14 years at this point. She had witnessed me do this on multiple occasions and had never mentioned it before. Because it wasn't an issue. She even had me train staff in this specific delivery method. Because it wasn't an issue." Therefore, his new boss offered two options: He could either sign a zero-hours contract and work for minimum wage, or she could fire him with two weeks' notice. He chose the latter, arguing that he would need 12 weeks' notice as per his contract.


Nicklo2k continued, "For those 12 weeks I worked the same way I had for 14 years. I didn't coast. I didn't slack. I didn't badmouth the company on my way out. I continued to train new staff. I continued to deliver the product in my own, personal, exceptional way. I also got in touch with an lawyer who was a specialist in employment law." During this time, the owner barely spoke to him, mostly because she was being petty. When his final day came, two things occurred: "The first was my friend who I had been training up to replace me quit... He hadn't informed me of his plans to leave, and I only learned of it when he knocked on my door in the middle of the day when he should have been at work to let me know. The second was the owner received a letter informing her that I was bringing legal proceedings against her for unfair dismissal. I had arranged this with my lawyer to be delivered the day after my final day. According to the office assistant, she went pale and started crying, before leaving the office to call her lawyer."


The new owner dragged the case on for a year, but Nicklo2k ultimately won as she ended up settling out of court. The Reddit user also had a couple of other wins, including landing a new job in a different industry where a lot of his skills transferred over. He is currently earning more than he was earlier, working fewer hours, and for better owners. As for his former workplace, the Reddit user shared, "The business is floundering. COVID left the new owner desperate for cash. She cancelled orders but refused to refund customers money, citing an "act of god" clause in the contracts. The business' Facebook and Google reviews have tanked. Most staff left. The business is still afloat, but barely." This has been an absolutely delicious story of how justice was served in the end.


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