so on Friday 13th of may, me and this certain employee got into another argument, which lead to the Tech Lead, standing over me while I was seated, indicating that he was going to punch me and telling me in front of everyone including management that "I am going to fu***** punch you in your face", all management did was to give him a written warning, please help me, I don't know what to do. I'm tired of going to work in a company which clearly does not care about my well being.

I have been working for a start-up which is struggling to make any revenue for the past 9 months and since a month ago a Lead Developer has joined our team on a much higher salary.

Due to communication problems the lead and I do not get along and today I was told by the CTO that we should make it work by trying to get along otherwise he will be forced to make a decision regarding which one of us should stay in the company.

My question is this, since this has not been an issue since the start of my employment and the problem has risen since the new lead developer has joined would it be legally ok for my employer to let me go (fire me) on that basis alone? My presumption is that they will get rid of me in favour of the more senior developer just based on the fact that he has more experience and he would be more valuable to the business.

I am not the only employee that had joined before the Lead, we are a team of four, with three of us joining before the particular lead, one architect and another lead and me have been in the company before this lead

There are no pay-offs mentioned in my contract but I passed my probation 6 months ago and it just does not feel like a valid reason for an employer to pick and choose who they will keep and fire based on strategic reasons for example in my case knowing that the company is tight on budget and have struggled in the past to hire people will probably decide to keep the lead developer and fire me to both save on budget and keep the more senior dev in the company.

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    Yes, they can make your position redundant (that doesnt require a last-in-first-out order, especially if you are not also a Lead Developer) and because you are within your first two years of employment there is little recourse so long as the proper procedures are taken. – Moo Mar 31 '16 at 11:29
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    "it just does not feel like a valid reason for an employer to pick and choose who they will keep and fire based on strategic reasons". Ummmm.... strategic reasons are the best reasons to make a decision like that. – Philip Kendall Mar 31 '16 at 12:20
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    gov.uk/browse/employing-people/contracts should help you with understanding employment laws in the UK. To be brutal, you'll find no legal recourse for your situation as it's under two years, and as @Moo states as long as the minimum of procedure is followed you'll find it hard to get representation and it will be expensive. – Ourjamie Mar 31 '16 at 12:28
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    The employer had tried having the OP without the lead developer. If that arrangement worked, from the employer's point of view, they would not have hired the lead. That seems to me to be a very strong reason to keep the lead, if they have to make a choice. – Patricia Shanahan Mar 31 '16 at 12:30
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    @Xerxes but if you are the only one not getting along with the new lead, it would make strategic sense to let you go. Arguing and bickering with coworkers (or just being passive aggressive) costs the business time and money. If they need to let someone go, you want to make sure you are always providing more value for you salary than someone else. If you are out performing your teammates and not causing office drama you should have no worries. – adeady Mar 31 '16 at 13:06

Taking credit from both Moo and Joe's comments:

Firstly consult your contract, it may answer this questions easily as a lot of contracts go into great detail about termination and redundancy.

Note, in UK, companies are allowed to let you go (if your initial review period is complete, if not they can usually let you go without any redundancy pay) if they believe you do not offer what they require. In these cases most contracts will detail the amount of redundancy you are entitled to. Citizens advice can help you read through your contract and work it out.

In your specific case, I would make a strong effort to work together with the Lead Developer and put whatever personal hang-ups you have about them to one side and do what is best for the project/company/customer. It is likely you may need a reference from the lead developer in future.

With startup's there is a high risk element and a long period of no profit could indicate poor future performance, you should be constantly assessing that risk.

I would also get a copy of the company's grievance procedure and tell your boss you are considering a formal grievance - threatening to assault some one would normally be considered gross misconduct.

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    Many contract don't provide for payments on termination, but nonetheless there are legal minima on what you should be paid on termination. – DJClayworth Mar 31 '16 at 13:25
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    @DJClayworth under two years, its basically nothing - whatever your notice period and thats it. The statutory redundancy calculator at gov.uk/calculate-your-redundancy-pay starts off by saying "You only qualify for statutory redundancy pay if you’ve worked for your employer for at least 2 years." – Moo Mar 31 '16 at 13:28
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    Note as a backup to what @moo says - while they can let you go, they cannot fire you without notice and instead can make you redundant giving you your legal minimum notice period (which in this case, is a week by employment law). There is nothing illegal about this as it doesn't (Presumably - Can you clarify?) fall under anti-discrimination legislation. – iamgory Apr 1 '16 at 13:42
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    Just to add to @iamgory's comment, the necessary notice might be longer than a week if something in your contract makes it so - not that this changes much. – meta Apr 7 '16 at 22:56
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    Please see the update and help me if you can! – farhad-taran May 14 '16 at 9:15

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