How to avoid a wrongful dismissal claim?

Robert Rooker

24 January 2018

Wrongful Dismissal should not be confused with Unfair Dismissal, as wrongful Dismissal is based on contract law and the employee’s contract of employment. Any claim for Wrongful Dismissal will, therefore, mean looking at the employee's employment contract to see if the employer has broken the contract.

The most common breach is where the employee is dismissed without notice or the notice is given is too short. Obviously, either party can end the employment relationship if they give the necessary notice. This will either be the legal minimum or what is stated in the employee's contract.

However, the employer can justify dismissing the employee without notice (Summary Dismissal) if the employee commits a serious breach of the contract, for example, theft. The employer does not have to have proof of the theft; suspicion is enough. The employer can also rely on evidence that is only found after the dismissal.

Another example of wrongful dismissal is a failure by the employer to follow a contractual disciplinary procedure.

Wrongful dismissal claims can be brought in the Employment Tribunal, County Court or High Court depending on the value of the claim.

Expert employment solicitor Robert Rocker explains and answers some questions on how employers can avoid a claim for wrongful dismissal.

Hello, everybody, my name is Mark Ferron MD of Castle Associates and I speak to employment law experts across the country. Has an employer wrongful dismissal can be an issue I put these questions to employment law solicitor Robert Rocker.

How can an employer avoid a claim for wrongful dismissal?

An employer can avoid claims for wrongful dismissal by ensuring that they dismiss an employee in accordance with the contract of employment and also by going through their disciplinary procedures.

What are the mistakes that employers make in regards to wrongful dismissal?

Common mistakes made by employers are that they tend to dismiss without giving due notice or don't carry out an investigation into whatever incident has led to the dismissal or don't follow their disciplinary procedures.

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