I have had a Limited company UK contract, with an Agency and worked at their end-client. After working for a few months, my role was suddenly terminated by the client (i.e. the end client, no reason given in writing). But she told (in writing ) that - they will be paying for the full notice.

It seems that - my agency signed me for 1 month (both way) on my contract but under the hood they seems to have signed 1/2 month with the client. And now agency is saying they are unable to pay for the difference as client’s only gonna pay for - what they want to pay— Since client is the supreme authority.

What can we do about it? Will I be able to dispute with the agency on hidden shorter notice period which wasn’t disclosed to me?


  • What exactly is the nature of the contract you have with the agency? Are you an employee of the agency, and the agency as your employer then sends you out to work at their end-clients or are you an independent contractor who uses the services of the agency as a sort-of middle-man to sell & promote your services and handle billing the end-clients?
    – brhans
    Jun 4, 2019 at 16:26
  • Go and see the Citizen's Advice - they can help you through this. Often just the fact you have talked with a knowledgeable 3rd party is enough to get the agency to back down...
    – Solar Mike
    Jun 4, 2019 at 17:08
  • Independent contractor.. Jun 6, 2019 at 9:13

1 Answer 1


Assuming that you have a written contract which states you are entitled to one month's notice, you are entitled to one month's notice. End of story - that's the contract you and your employer both signed, and what both you and your employer must now stick to. As you say, it doesn't matter what your employer signed with their client, that's not a contract you signed so you don't have to worry about it.

What I'd do in this situation:

  1. Politely but directly point out the clause in your contract which states one month's notice.
  2. If that doesn't work, say you will be instructing your solicitors. At this point, it doesn't really matter too much if you have any solicitors on hand or not, the threat is generally enough to get people to stick to a contract.
  • 1
    Yes - all of the above, except your agency, not your employer. You (actually your Ltd co) are also entitled to recover reasonable costs e.g. £n per letter that you have to write or respond to (go with 1x your hourly rate for every one), PLUS interest on the entire sum due; I think its 15%, but I'd have to look it up (or you can, OP). If it's only 2 weeks, you can probably use the small claims process, which is cheaper but won't probably allow you to add costs (haven't checked this in a while, either).
    – Justin
    Jun 4, 2019 at 15:47
  • hmm...They(agency) have one fine print in contract that if for whatever reason, if client doesn't pay, we won't pay you. And client is saying they will only pay what they have signed with agency Jun 4, 2019 at 16:16
  • Also, will I be able to claim damages for - not letting me work during notice period & trying to buy it with money? [Since I am very much sure, on other hand if I would have requested to leave early they wouldn't have let me go, even if I would have proposed to pay the notice. They would have claimed more money in damages on top] Jun 4, 2019 at 16:25
  • 2
    Ouch. That fine print puts this in a very different light - you agreed to that clause so it's likely they can enforce that. Moral of the story: read the contract. Jun 4, 2019 at 17:35
  • 1
    You'd need to have pretty strong proof of that. Then it becomes complicated, and you should talk to your solicitor.
    – MvZ
    Jun 6, 2019 at 18:39

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