A friend has confided to me that he has been summoned to court to answer a charge of fare avoidance on the Tube. He’s young, is the last person in the world that would maliciously avoid fares etc, and is really worried that his current employer will sack him (he’s with a new employer now). He’s going to plead guilty because he did ‘fare dodge’ by means of a staff travel card, though there’s apparently a culture of employees of this previous organisation using their travel cards in this way, and also of fare dodgers not always getting a court summons and a probable criminal record, but of being issued with a fixed penalty notice. Moreover he’s very worried about not being able to pay any large fines, or of not being able to travel to say the USA on holiday with a criminal record.

As an aside is there not some duty of care or related aspect for employers to not only ensure employees fully appreciate and understand the implications and restrictions of such travel cards, and of recovering such cards when employees leave?

Anything I can do to assuage my young friend’s growing levels of anxiety and stress would be most welcome!

Kind regards

Martin Schmalenbach
Martin Schmalenbach

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