Our Employment Solicitors in Rotherham can assist clients from Rotherham, Sheffield, Doncaster, Barnsley and further afield if they think they have been unfairly dismissed, or if an ex-employee is bringing an unfair dismissal claim against them.
What is Unfair Dismissal?
If you’ve been dismissed your employer must show that they have done so for one of five reasons. These reasons are outlined in the Employment Rights Act 1996, but can be considered as follows:
- Statutory Reasons
- Some Other Substantial Reason
It will be up to your employer to prove that you have been dismissed for one of these reasons. If they cannot your dismissal will be classed as unfair. They will also be required to show that they have acted reasonably.
The Process of Dismissal
Even if your employer can show that they dismissed you for a fair reason they must also be able to show they followed correct procedure. If they did not follow the correct procedure the dismissal will be classed as unfair.
The correct process is outlined by ACAS in their Code of Practice. This Code of Practice sets out the following:
- There should be no unreasonable delay in dealing with issues
- Employers and Employees must act consistently
- Necessary investigations are required to establish facts
- You should be informed of the issue so that you can defend your position
- You should be given the right to be accompanied at any formal disciplinary meetings
- You should be given the right of appeal against any formal decision
If your employer has failed at any of these steps then your dismissal could be unfair due to procedure.
The Qualifying Period
Generally, you will need to have been employed, by your employer, continuously for two years before your dismissal. Depending on the reasons behind your dismissal exceptions to this qualifying period may apply. If your dismissal relates to one of the following you might be able to claim regardless of the length of your employment:
- Jury Service
- Maternity Leave
- Flexible Working
- Health & Safety
- Refusal by shop workers to work Sunday
- Working Time
- Statutory Rights
- Minimum Wage
- Unfair Redundancy
This isn’t an exhaustive list but does include some of the most common reasons that cases are brought without the qualifying period applying.
Compensation – Basic Award
The basic award is calculated using your length of service, age and your weekly pay at the date of your dismissal. The maximum entitlement is based off 20 years’ service.
You could be entitled to:
- One and a half weeks’ pay for each year of employment after age 41;
- One week’s pay for each year of employment between ages 22 and 40;
- Half a week’s pay for each year of employment under the age of 22.
Compensation – Compensatory Award
The compensatory award is for losses which have arisen due to your unfair dismissal. This usually includes things such as loss of wages, loss of future wages and loss of pension. It is not a punitive based award and is only designed to put you in a position you would have been in, had you not been unfairly dismissed.
You are under a duty to make a reasonable effort to secure alternative employment and mitigate your losses. If you fail to do this, and the tribunal considers that you should have, then your compensatory award could be reduced to only reflect what they believe a reasonable period of loss to be.
If you’ve been dismissed you only have three months, minus one day, to bring a claim for unfair dismissal. This is a very short time frame and we encourage all our clients to contact us as soon as possible so that we can ensure the process is managed correctly.
If you think you may have been the victim of unfair dismissal you can contact us either by phone on 01709363876 or by using our form on this web page. We offer a free consultation for anyone who suspects they’ve been unfairly dismissed so that they can get answers without risk.
Arthur Jackson & Co Solicitors will only use your information for the purposes of your enquiry.