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  • Evilm
    • #2
    • 24th May 11, 8:12 PM
    • #2
    • 24th May 11, 8:12 PM
    I would make the boss fill out or at least sign the forms/letters. I've refused to do this before in an insurance shipping case and felt perfectly justified in making the boss who wanted to 'falsify' the claim put their name to it.

    (However I wasn't in a position where this could cost me my job since I was only temping - That I can't comment on but think I would still insist it was the bosses signature on the forms anyway even if my job was at risk).
    • onlineo
    • By onlineo 24th May 11, 10:54 PM
    • 42 Posts
    • 10 Thanks
    • #3
    • 24th May 11, 10:54 PM
    • #3
    • 24th May 11, 10:54 PM

    I would suggest if 20% of the consignment is damaged I would expect 20% of the replacement stock to be damaged, so I would happily over-order to cover that.

    Otherwise I would probably tell my bosses boss about the situation. If they suggest over ordering is a good way to get free stock I think I would start applying for a new job that day. Setting myself a deadline of 6-12 months to have started at a better company.
    • VoucherMan
    • By VoucherMan 25th May 11, 7:03 AM
    • 2,491 Posts
    • 4,996 Thanks
    • #4
    • 25th May 11, 7:03 AM
    • #4
    • 25th May 11, 7:03 AM
    I'm sure there'd be a case for unfair dismissal in there somewhere.

    Job lost due to refusal to commit fraud.

    Start gathering the evidence!
    • timbstoke
    • By timbstoke 25th May 11, 7:45 AM
    • 958 Posts
    • 1,232 Thanks
    • #5
    • 25th May 11, 7:45 AM
    • #5
    • 25th May 11, 7:45 AM
    I'd probably place the order, but I'd make sure my boss either signed off on it, or at the very least, had an email along the lines of "As per your instructions, I have put in a claim for 20 widgets to replace the 15 we received damaged"
  • noodle
    • #6
    • 25th May 11, 8:27 AM
    • #6
    • 25th May 11, 8:27 AM
    Absolutely not. This sort of behaviour could escallate, and put the employee at risk of consequences much worse than being fired by a fraudster.. also bear in mind that there are people in the supplier company who could end up losing their jobs too if they keep getting ripped off.

    This is a road not to go down.

    Keep whatever evidence you have in the event that the boss doesn't just shrug it off and it looks like it might become a problem, and keep notes of any subsequent evidence that the boss is making life more difficult for you. If at all possible (depends on company size and strucuture), raise the issue 'informally' with someone else in the company (be casual, perhaps say 'I don't know if he was being serious, and I don't want anything said to him at this stage, but I want to have it on record that this happened'.)
    • Ebenezer_Screwj
    • By Ebenezer_Screwj 25th May 11, 8:34 AM
    • 420 Posts
    • 229 Thanks
    • #7
    • 25th May 11, 8:34 AM
    • #7
    • 25th May 11, 8:34 AM
    As your boss wishes to run his business along dishonest lines, he must sign all the paperwork himself to avoid compromising his employees.
  • bennett2kuk
    • #8
    • 25th May 11, 8:44 AM
    • #8
    • 25th May 11, 8:44 AM
    It's immoral, but if you put your own morals ahead of keeping your job then congratulations. You're a saint, but just try telling the dole office and see how much they care.

    My mother owned a shop and every time an order came in she would claim some were broken in transit, or if a few were broken the numbers would be exaggerated. It's not worth the sending company the hassle of having it shipped back and so they just assume you're right. But then they probably just claim the money back from their shipping company.

    I don't necessarily agree with what she did, I don't agree with most things she does and get on much better with her now she's emigrated but that's beside the point.

    As with everybody else who's commented so far though if it's not your decision then don't put your name on it. Makes sense to me.
  • Brian Steele
    • #9
    • 25th May 11, 11:44 AM
    No and no
    • #9
    • 25th May 11, 11:44 AM
    Two reasons why you should not do this.

    The first is the moral one. It is illegal and you should not do it, whether you reckon you would get caught or not. There are also related issues concerning taxation and how the company declares these "under the counter" earnings.

    The second is a pragmatice one. The suppliers "usually replace without question". What happens when they don't? Where will you be then? Losing a supplier is one thing, but there may be a fraud claim in the offing as a consequence.

    It would be worth at least telling the boss that you are not comfortable with it, going as far as to say that you feel that not only do you think it is wrong, but that they should not simply pass responsibility to someone who does not feel so strongly about it. If it is a direct order, then get them to sign the claims off. If that doesn't work, try to get it in writing or confirm the ruling with an email saying "as instructed by you... " If that also doesn't work, then make clear and dated notes of what is going on and contact your boss's superior if possible.

    Employment legislation protects you from whistleblowing in such circumstances and there would be a clear case for unfair or constructive dismissal if you lost your job. It is a difficult employment market out there, but this kind of unscrupulous practice is completely unacceptable in my book, even if your competitors are doing it.
  • Swifty_Acc
    Business is Business

    Personally, I would say yes. Loss of stock would have resulted in loss of earnings for your company that go above the price you paid for the stock in the first place. Add into that the fact that you may have paid for transport costs, warehousing, possible customs / excise duty, all for stock you are not able to sell, then yes, you should claim back more.

    This kind of thing happens in retail all of the time (source: my workplace), but is called compensation. 'Your friend' should charge through this route rather than being dishonest.
    • elizabethhull
    • By elizabethhull 25th May 11, 12:13 PM
    • 281 Posts
    • 1,835 Thanks
    'Should she fake....?'
    I was wondering how often a moral dilemma would arise starting with the above phrase, where the answer is yes?? Only occasionally, maybe.
    The trouble is the uncertainty of the job market encourages us to turn a blind eye to dishonest practices.
    As others have said, KEEP THE EVIDENCE, including, if at all possible, the email 'as per your instructions...etc' That is your biggest protection. You know, despite justification, there is something wrong here. Well, at least you have the conscience to recognise it.
    I should start looking for other jobs - not all bosses are like this at all. But don't say at your next interview why you're thinking of leaving - unfortunately it won't go down well !
  • bogwart
    Absolutely not. You would be making yourself an accessory to a criminal offence and, if discovered, would face the same penalties as your boss. In fact from what you have said he could blame the entire thing on you and assert that it was your idea. If he decides to sack you for this he's an even bigger idiot than he sounds - make sure you keep a note of all interaction between the two of you.
  • A65Bill
    Fraud is Fraud
    You should not involve yourself in a fraud. If your boss insists on you preparing the false claim, you should send him an email with a bcc to your private email saying briefly that you are not comfortable with it. He must sign the claim, not you.
    However, what you could also offer to do is to sit with your boss for 1/2 hr to work out the full economic cost of the damaged goods. This will be more than the basic cost of that proportion of the order. He should then submit a claim to the supplier showing the breakdown of the full cost of the claim and encouraging the supplier to improve their packaging.
    You should then suggest that your boss bears this problem in mind before he signs another supplier's contract & should negotiate a suitable method to calculate compensation/recompense for damages in advance.
    There is no need or justification for dishonesty.
    I speak from experience, I lost my job because I wouldn't submit a substantial fraudulent claim for public funds. CPS decided it was not in the public interest to prosecute those who did submit the claim.
    • kneelbeforezod
    • By kneelbeforezod 25th May 11, 1:44 PM
    • 44 Posts
    • 30 Thanks
    My friend's firm imports goods from the Far East to supply British shops.

    Jobs are hard to get locally
    Originally posted by MSE Lee

    As others here have said - it's fraud, pure and simple. I suggest the OP's friend asks further up the food chain for affirmation of the boss's instruction. If they reiterate what he says...if she has a conscience she might like to start looking for a more responsible employer. Oh, and she should ensure everything that's said is recorded in email or otherwise in writing, if at all possible.

    Slightly O/T - I couldn't help noticing the irony of the two statements above. Surely the sad state of affairs in this country is that they're inextricably linked?

    Do be parsimonious everyone - but do try and buy locally produced merchandise where possible, even if it's a little more expensive. It will save us all money in the long run
  • Marco12452
    Be honest with both parties.
    • pennypinchUK
    • By pennypinchUK 25th May 11, 2:12 PM
    • 382 Posts
    • 732 Thanks
    Your friend is clearly being put in a no-win position by her boss - she should complete the necessary paperwork without identifying herself (therefore doing nothing illegal and/or dodgy), and get the boss to sign/send it in their name. I wonder if the boss will be so keen to claim then?

    Oh, and then she should start looking for a new job.
  • David12
    Do you have a trade union or professional association? If so, involve them early on.
    • MyOpinion
    • By MyOpinion 25th May 11, 4:22 PM
    • 31 Posts
    • 34 Thanks
    Of course not
    If this is how your boss treats your suppliers why should he treat his employees any better. Time to jump ship.
    • Gresp
    • By Gresp 25th May 11, 4:53 PM
    • 30 Posts
    • 63 Thanks
    Think what's the worst that could happen - and it's a clear NO
    She should fill in the claim form correctly - then if her boss won't sign it, get another (more honest) colleague to.

    Like others have said, she should get any such instructions from her boss in writing, and also mention any such conversations to other people (colleagues, friends, etc). If this does ever go to court, she'll need the evidence.

    If you think of the worst case scenario, this is a no-brainer.

    Finding a new job might be hard, but it'll be even harder if she has a criminal record.
    • marich
    • By marich 25th May 11, 9:53 PM
    • 112 Posts
    • 125 Thanks
    A Pleasant Surprise !
    What a pleasant surprise . I am sometimes horrified by the low morality , punitive penny-pinching or encouragement to opportunistic duplicity that I have seen in responses to some of these dilemmas .

    It is heartening to see so many responses advising this person to resist 'The Boss' here . I would echo the advice to :
    a) transfer the responsibility ,
    b) to establish a paper record and
    c) to start looking elsewhere for a new job .

    The individual has been placed in a bad spot and will be put there again if this is 'par for the course' in their workplace . They not only have to preserve their integrity in the short term but have to quietly plan their escape .

    It is probably not a good idea to get involved in exposing the situation to anybody else .

    Good luck to them .

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