First Tuesday Q&A

The claimant was dismissed by reason of gross misconduct and in particular.

Please advise on the use of social media e.g. Facebook in relation to recruitment and in relation to dismissal where a staff member is making inappropriate comments about the organisation/ specific personnel.

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 02/10/2012 In relation to recruitment, there is no formal legal provision preventing an employer from looking at any publicly available material before offering an individual a job, including social media. However, employers should weigh the benefit of obtaining any information from these sites against its ai...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Disciplinary and Grievance Issues Recruitment and Selection

Why is a thorough investigation important in disciplinary cases? Is it a legal requirement?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 04/09/2012 There is no statutory obligation to carry out an investigation before a disciplinary matter. However, it is the investigation process which will identify whether there are grounds to instigate disciplinary procedures. The Labour Relations Agency’s Code of Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance proc...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Unfair Dismissal Disciplinary and Grievance Issues

If an employer receives an anonymous written bullying complaint naming an individual and alleging bullying, what are their obligations regarding follow up?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 04/09/2012 Employers have a legal duty to act reasonably and investigate bullying complaints appropriately. In situations where the complaint is serious in nature and/or contains sufficient detail to deal with the matters complained of, the employer should investigate further. Failure to do so may result in l...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Disciplinary and Grievance Issues

Do employees have the right to be accompanied or represented at disciplinary and grievance meetings / hearings? What is the difference between ‘accompanied’ and ‘represented’ and what / who determines whether an employee has a right to be accompanied or represented?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 04/09/2012 Employees have a statutory right to be accompanied where they are required or invited by their employer to attend disciplinary hearings which could result in: a formal warning being issued; the taking of some disciplinary action (i.e. suspension without pay, demotion or dismissal); and/or the conf...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Disciplinary and Grievance Issues

May I dismiss an employee who has under one year’s service without going through the disciplinary procedure?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 05/06/2012 As a starting point, an employee normally requires 1 year’s service to bring a claim for unfair dismissal. However, there are occasions in which an employee can bring a claim for automatic unfair dismissal despite not having one year’s service. Some examples are, if the reason for the dismissal is ...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Unfair Dismissal Disciplinary and Grievance Issues

Is annual leave accrued on a period of paid suspension? If an employee is suspended from work pending a disciplinary investigation, is there an entitlement to accrue annual leave? Ideally we would like to adjust our annual leave policy to state that whilst on paid suspension you do not accrue annual leave.

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 06/03/2012 Yes. During any period of paid disciplinary suspension, the contract of employment continues and it is normally the case that employees who are suspended under disciplinary policies are required to be available to their employer. As such, annual leave entitlement continues to accrue in the usual wa...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Disciplinary and Grievance Issues Working Time and Leave

If an incident occurs at an event attended by a number of staff but that event was in no way arranged by the company, is the employer liable for any incidents that may occur? For example, if one employee assaults another, should the employer investigate and carry out a disciplinary procedure?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 07/02/2012 It is well established that an employer can be vicariously liable for certain actions of its employees where these occur “in the course of employment”, i.e. certain actions done by the employee can be treated as done by the employer as well as by the employee, whether or not it was done with the em...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Disciplinary and Grievance Issues

If we have been using the ‘old’ grievance procedures for period of time rather than new LRA code, how will that be viewed by Tribunal, or is the most important thing that we followed a procedure, rather than nothing?

Posted in: First Tuesday Q&A NI on 06/12/2011 Both the “old” LRA Code grievance procedure and the “new” LRA Code grievance procedure cover the minimum process that should be followed when implementing a grievance procedure. Therefore, the old grievance procedure you have followed is likely to be compliant with the new LRA Code grievance proced...
This article is listed under the following topics:
Disciplinary and Grievance Issues Policies and Procedures