Unfair Dismissal

Our specialist team will work with you to ensure that matters run as smoothly as possible when dealing with employment problems. We will draft the necessary letters and agreements and provide expert guidance and advice to ensure that potentially contentious matters are handled with sensitivity and a clear understanding of each party’s legal obligations.

Employees are protected from being unfairly dismissed providing they have been employed for the minimum period of time.  Normally this is 12 months but there are a number of special cases where there is no minimum period of employment.

Where the employee is protected from unfair dismissal the employer has to show that the reason, or if more than one, then the principal reason for dismissing an employee falls into one of the categories set out in the Employment Rights Act 1996. These categories are as follows;

  • There was a genuine redundancy
  • The employee lacks the capability or qualifications to do the job he/she is employed to do
  • The employee no longer being able to do his/her job because by doing so would contravene a statutory provision
  • The dismissal was a result of the conduct of the employee
  • Some other substantial reason

If the employer is not able to satisfy the Employment Tribunal that the dismissal was for one of the above reasons then the termination of the employment will be found to be automatically unfair.

If one of the above reasons is established by the employer, the Employment Tribunal must then decide whether the employer acted reasonably in dismissing the employee. The Tribunal has to decide “in accordance with equity and the substantial merits of the case” whether the dismissal was fair or unfair.

If the Employment Tribunal finds against you it has the power to order that you reinstate your employee or more usually that you pay him or her compensation.   Where the dismissal has been on one of the special grounds such as sexual discrimination the compensation ordered can be high.

Why choose us?

This is a complex area of law which is often something of a nightmare particularly for the small employer.  It is essential to make sure that legal advice is taken at the right time so as to try and avoid the pitfalls that otherwise can cause much damage to a business.

Contact one of our helpful team to make an appointment or to discuss any employment issues you may have.