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Harassment and legal threats after 14 day contract termination notice

Jarod

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Hi ladies and gentlemen :)

This is my first post here. I still work for a small Eikaiwa and I recently submitted my termination notice. They are giving me a hard time about it. I have already read through the forums and got a lot of information from you guys but I still want to share my particular case and hear some opinions if possible.

I will try to keep it short but it might still be a longer story. I came to Japan in December of 2012, after I applied to a small Eikaiwa in September of the same year. I agreed to (which was probably stupid) do the Eikaiwa job as well as a job at a wedding place to, according to my boss, ensure my salary.

So I started doing that from 22.2.2013.

At some points I have been insulted and shouted at by my bosses for the stupidest reasons leaving me with the feeling of quitting once I find a better, new job.

Time jump, until the beginning of October they didn't make a contract with me. At that time I was working every weekend at the wedding place and 4 days during the week at the Eikaiwa for a meager 180000 Yen per month. In my contract, as many others in the forum also experienced, they stated a termination time of 90 days in advance. It also states nothing about weddings. The contract was open ended. Not for a year or anything. I read the law that states 14 days of notice are sufficient and stated that out to my boss who refused to change the contract so I shrugged and signed it.

In the middle of March this year I got wind of another job (with better working conditions more free time and a higher salary), meeting everybody at the 28th. They told me I could have the job if I start before April 20th, so I accepted and handed my termination notice to my boss on the 31st, to quit after the 14th.

First they claimed the contract is valid and said I cant quit. Then they tried to at least force me to do the wedding job and explain my personal situation to all other teachers of the Eikaiwa (matters that concern me as well as my girlfriend with whom I live together). I didn't rule out the possibility of helping them because I was a bit scared they might end up sueing me.

The next day they asked me AND my girlfriend to sign a vow in which I should promise to help them with weddings until the end of the 90 days. Of course I didn't sign anything, told them that and went to the labour office.
According to the labour office my termination is valid under the law and me beginning a new job the next day is not against any law. They might try to claim compensation but according to the office its unlikely.

After that my boss somehow found out about the new place I will start working from 15th, called them and tried to arrange that they won't let me work there unless I help out at the weekend. According to my new workplace however no matter what we decide I will start working for them.

So of course I refused to sign any documents after which they called me a liar, wanting another meeting, and when I said goodbye to everybody at the wedding place my boss called me and shouted at me asking me if I didn't want my new work after all, hinting at that my new workplace would refuse to give me the job. So this week on Monday I went to the work office again, told them everything after which the boss of the office himself called my boss to tell her that what she is doing is power harassment and illegal. Before he got to call her my boss actually made the two and a half hour trip to talk to the people at my new workplace, now saying she knows I quit legally but that she would take legal actions against me if I dont help.

After she got the call from the work office she had to call and retract all her statements and promise to refrain from doing anything like that.

She didn't only embarrass me and herself by contacting and going to my new workplace, she also threatened the future of my girlfriend (who is pregnant right now which my boss knows) and my own with her actions.

She still claims to take legal actions if I don't help during the 90 days or don't go to the meeting, even though she might now actually lose the contract with the wedding place distributor for not informing the staff manager about me quitting.

Of course I said no and refused to go to any meeting that would take place outside my working hours.

I am not concerned since I read in many forums and other websites that these are usually empty threats that lead to nowhere. Still I want to share this experience with you and hope to maybe get some opinions on the matter.
 

Glenski

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You have been there more than a year, so you have to give only two weeks notice no matter what the contract says.

Give it and go. Contact the Labour Standards Office near you to deal with any disputes. Your old boss is being a dick. Is he Japanese or foreign?
 

Jarod

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She is Japanese with an American husband. He is basically also my boss. But the main contact and harassment now has been from her.

I am in contact with the labour office, thank you!

Today they still claim to sue me but I wont be intimidated. Ill update so maybe other people can learn from my experience! Any more tips are welcome!
 

edogaijin

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Based on what you said, good for you for standing up for yourself. I'd stop talking with the old codger and let the LSO set her straight.
 

biscuit00

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Don't worry about it. They can't do anything. Just don't show up to work.
Suing is not that easy in Japan.
 
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