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I’m due to return to work after additional maternity leave and my company has offered me totally different shifts, all late nights when there is nothing in my contract saying they can change my hours which are fixed. I explained at the meeting that I would not be able to do late evenings due to childcare, but the manager has just contacted me telling me I have to do late night shifts finishing when the store closes so that by the time I would get home it would be past 12. I tried to explain when she contacted me and mentioned childcare again. She said these hours are all the company can offer you. I said I would look into childminders which I have and none are willing to take on two children and a baby until the time of night required. What can I do?
If you return in ordinary maternity leave [first six months] you are entitled to return on the same terms and conditions as you left. If you return on additional maternity leave [6-12 months] you are entitled to return to your original job or a suitable alternative [similar terms and conditions] if this no longer exists, for instance, due to redundancy. If your hours are specified in your contract and there is no clause about changing them for business reasons, etc, your employer would need to consult you and gain your agreement.