The client began working for his employer in 2006, and worked with his colleague, ST, without incident for nearly 20 years.
In early 2020, ST’s Bluetooth speaker was removed from his work area. ST mistakenly blamed our client when it was actually confiscated by Human Resources. Despite having a previously good working relationship with our client, this prompted ST to start spreading rumours that our client was a thief, and that he was taking drugs.
ST began a campaign of oppressive and intimidating conduct against our client which continued from 8th June 2020 to 6th October 2020. This behaviour included, but was not limited, to the following: threats of physical violence against our client; threats to visit our client’s house; threats to kill our clients dog by poison and leaving dog treats around his work area; and interference with our client’s tools and work area to make it look as though he is chaotic and disorganised.
Our client reported ST’s behaviour multiple times to his team leader and HR. They all spoke to ST but failed to take any additional measures that would have protected our client from ST’s behaviour. On 11th September 2020, our client raised a formal grievance against ST. Our client never received a written outcome to his formal complaints. Because of this, ST’s behaviour continued unabated and escalated to ST following our client in his vehicle most dinner breaks and evenings.
Unsurprisingly, our client’s mental health began to suffer and our client called in sick due to stress on 5th October 2020. ST was suspended on 6th October 2020, but had he been suspended earlier our client’s absence could have been prevented. ST was issued with a final written warning on 20th October 2020.
Our client approached Setfords to assist in his claim. The Letter of Claim was sent on 1st February 2021 and acknowledged on 11th June 2021. The claim ultimately settled by Part 36 offer for a five-figure sum on 4th February 2022.