An employment tribunal has ruled that a restaurant must pay a former employee just under £2,000.

The panel ruled that Caleb Douglas had not been paid by Mrs Yang’s Restaurant Ltd for all the hours he had worked, neither had he received proper paperwork, notice or holiday pay.

Mr Douglas worked for Dandan Li at Mrs Yang’s Restaurant on Douglas’ North Quay from September 28 2022 and was hired to set up a bar, to liaise with suppliers and produce a cocktail menu.

The tribunal, chaired by Felicity Kniveton, said in its report: ‘Mrs Li told him to keep a record of his hours and he would be paid for those hours, then he would start a 40 hour week as bar manager when the Bar opened on November 7 2022.’

Mr Douglas referred to various texts from October and November 2022, pictures and a sample cocktail menu that he maintained showed that he had worked 63 hours from September 28 to November 6 2022.

A witness statement was also read that said that on November 7 2022 Mr Douglas had worked ‘more than 10 hours before the bar opening’ and the ‘on the day before the opening they both worked most of the day and evening setting up the new Bar for opening the next day’. However, the witness did not appear at the tribunal.

Mrs Li said that she had asked Mr Douglas to help out and offered to pay him £11.50 an hour and that he was keeping a record of his hours worked with him being paid in November, following which he would work 40 hours a week at a rate of £11.50 an hour.

The tribunal’s report said: ‘Mrs Li maintained that from September 8 to November 6, 2022, the complainant was not an employee. She was not aware of employment legislation requiring written terms and conditions to be provided to an employee within four weeks of commencing work or regarding provision of itemised pay statements.

‘This despite running the business with various staff for about six years and having an accountant. However, she did know that tax and national insurance had to be deducted from wages and details provided to the relevant authorities.’

She also maintained that she had asked the Complainant for his T10 and T21 (employment and tax forms) but they were not provided.

The report added that Mrs Li told the tribunal that she had observed Mr Douglas ‘sitting in the bar with his laptop eating pizza and drinking coffee, not working, but she had not said anything to the complainant or asked him to keep time sheets for her to check regularly’.

She also confirmed that she didn’t know what hours he had worked.

‘Mrs Li repeatedly stated that she did not think that the Complainant was actually employed until November 7, 2022, despite confirming that she hired him to set up the Bar and agreed an hourly rate for the hours worked,’ the tribunal said.

Mr Douglas was given his written terms and conditions around November 7.

The complainant was later fired from the bar, with Mrs Li saying he had been ‘drinking behind the bar and banning customers without consulting with her’. He denied this and no evidence was provided to the tribunal.

Mrs Li said she had not paid Mr Douglas for the 71.25 hours after November 7, but that these hours were not disputed. However, she said she had received advice that the whole amount needed to be paid in one go and she did not have a T10 or T21.

She did in fact pay the complainant £1,085 shortly before the hearing, being 71.25 hours x £11.50 plus 18.75 hours x £11.50, as well as £50 extra as a ‘good will gesture’.

Mrs Li said that she was happy to pay him, but not for the disputed hours worked from September 28 to November 6, 2022.

The tribunal found that Mrs Li had not presented any evidence to suggest that Mr Douglas had worked only 10 hours a week prior to the bar opening, nor did she raise this with him.

The panel also determined that ‘given the facts and on the balance of probabilities, the complainant worked for 63 hours between September 28 to November 6, 2022, (inclusive) at a rate of £11.50 per hour’.

It was judged that both parties should take responsibility for the issue around Mr Douglas not providing proper T21 or T10 forms.

Mr Douglas was awarded £458.88 for the hours he had worked and not been paid for, £840, equivalent to two weeks’ pay, for not receiving written particulars, £149.96 in holiday pay and £420 pay in lieu of being given one week’s notice when he was fired.