22 Jul Leaving Your Job
Leaving Your Job? Reference Rules
OK, you have decided to leave your current employment, perhaps it’s time for a change, perhaps it didn’t work out quite as you hoped and expected. The best advice we can give is to try to leave on good terms if possible with a written notice period worked out.
You will probably ask your employee for a reference, but do they have to give you one? Are there rules about what can be said about you?
Your employer does not have to give you a reference, unless it states that they do in your contract of employment (best to check). If they do give a reference, it must be fair and accurate. It can include details about your work performance and if you were sacked. It can be brief – such as job title, salary and when you were employed.
Once you start with a new employer they can ask to see a copy of a reference. However, they have no right to ask your previous employer.
If you feel that the reference you have been given is unfair or misleading you may be able to challenge it in an Employment Tribunal and seek damages. To do this you must be able to show that the reference was misleading or inaccurate, that you ‘suffered a loss’ – for example, a job offer was withdrawn.
Your previous employer must be able to back up the reference, such as by supplying examples of warning letters.
The Graham Agency, working with you.