Odd accountant issue

Any AccountantAny Accountant Just JoinedPosts: 2Registered
Hi, fairly recently my office manager where I work was fired. The office manager had been up to quite a lot of what we can now see as grooming when they should have been working.

They created a load of problems which I have had to waste time fixing. At first they started to take a fairly substantial number of clients. As we are a small firm the clients taken took a chunk out of our overall client base.

This stopped after the first month or so, but now as we have started to tackle the vast backlog of tax returns, the said office manager has now began writing for more professional clearance on more clients. These clients have had their tax returns completed by us since the office manager left.

The problem is the office manager was fired for gross misconduct. After a drawn out load of solicitor letters the office manager has now called for an employment tribunal.

This in itself doesn’t seem to be too much of a problem, however, they have now stepped up the client theft. As with anything legal the employment tribunal will take months to sort, so my question is does anyone know what we can do to prevent anymore clients being poached??

Thank you in advance for your help. It would be massively appreciated.

Comments

  • BluewednesdayBluewednesday Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 1,624Registered
    Was there not an exclusion clause in their contract?

    My boss had one when he left his previous employment which meant he couldn't set up in practice within 5 miles (I think) of his previous practice and he couldn't approach the clients but they were able to approach him (which many did).

    I don't know how he could prove that he didn't approach the clients but that's what was in his contract.

    Has your office manager not got anything similar?
  • Any AccountantAny Accountant Just Joined Posts: 2Registered
    Yeah, they had a clause in the contract which stopped them taking any clients for 6 months after they left employment.

    I think the previous manager believes they can get round this by asking the clients to write a letter saying they approached the manager.

    The owner of the practice got some legal advice and was asured the contract was sound and the client letters would make no difference. The office manager would still be in breach of the clause in their contract.

    It has just got to the stage where the previous office manager is merely going through their phone and contacting nearly every client. They are then making up a story for their dismissal and taking the client.

    Just wondered if there was a way to stop this?
  • DeanDean Experienced Mentor DevonPosts: 646Registered
    Just wondered if there was a way to stop this?

    Talk to the clients?

    Regards

    Dean
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