Monday, 9 July 2012

Monthly Advice Feature with Elizabeth Crampton


Today we had Elizabeth Crampton in from the Citizens Advice Bureau, on her regular feature giving us some fntastic advice. At first we discussed the change in Sick Notes to Fit Notes. Originally you were required to provide a Medical Certificate which the government through new legislation have renamed Fit Notes. The new goverments agenda is to push the idea that you are never too sick to work. This of course has exceptions but pushes people to come back to work sooner. The new Fit Notes allow your GP to say whether you are genuinely not fit for work, fit for lighter duties (e.g. working on lighter, less challenging work under controlled conditions) and when you should be back.

Fit Notes are not always compulsory, you can stay off work if this is the case, but tell your employer.Some people want to return earlier than their Fit Note states and employers are wary about this, you can go back to doctor  to have this changed and and employer does not necessarily have to provide work for you if your Fit Note states you are fit for lighter work. If you recieve employer contractual sick pay - your employer can demand a sick note, make you phone in yourself - phone in by a set time so obey the rules! If your on minimum pay a Fit Note will not be required until a week has past.

We then discussed Nuisance calls these are cold calls, promotional calls etc. To deal with these you can register to the Telephone Preference Service (TPS) - while it isn't foolproof it does help and cuts the number of calls dramatically. The service doesn't cut off calls from companies your a customer of but you can report companies from inside the UK if you recieve a nuisance call for more details visit www.tpsonline.org.uk. Other solutions include removing your number from the directory, when signing up online be aware that you don't allow the company to pass your details on, don't give out your mobile phone number and purchase a caller display facility phone so you can use your answer phone to screen calls, hold personal details unless you know caller is genuine and you can ask your phone provider to screen all withheld numbers.

Finally we discussed Car Hire Charges, these can be airport server charges/ charges on petrol/ charges for extra driver costs and are frequently complained about. To protect yourself you can visit the British Vehicle Rental and Leasal Company, they will help with deals between the customer and company, providing the company is addressed first, this service only holds within the UK - when going abroad visit the European Vehicle Rental and Leasal Company.

For more advise on the topics discussed or any others visit www.adviseguide.org.uk where you can also find the address of your nearest C.A.B

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