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Lack of procedures costs Employer €21,000 for Unfair Dismissal

In the recent case of “A Store Manager v Wholesale and Retail Clothing Business” the Adjudicator awarded the Complainant €21,000 in compensation. The Complainant was employed as a store manager from January 2014 until her termination on 28th June 2017 on the basis of a sham redundancy. The Respondent maintained that the dismissal was based on the financial situation in the store and that the dismissal was fair.

The Complainant was put on a short period of forced leave on 14th June 2017 after she was advised that in June 2017 that there was a discrepancy in the stock intake in the store. Upon her return to work two weeks later, she was met by the general manager who told her that her position was no longer required. She received no written warning or oral notification prior to the termination of her employment nor was she offered any alternative roles or positions within the shop which she had successfully managed over the three-year period. The Complainant also submitted that an advertisement had been placed for a manager in the area where she had worked and submitted that her role was in fact not redundant.

While an investigation into the allegation took place the Respondent provided no evidence of conducting a thorough investigation, nor did it provide the Complainant with an opportunity to respond to any evidence before the final decision was made.

The Adjudicator was satisfied that the acts and omissions of the Respondent in its failure to either follow proper procedures regarding a redundancy, or adhere to proper procedures regarding an investigation of its concerns fell short of what is expected of a reasonable employer. The Complainant was awarded €21,000 compensation to address the manner in which she was unfairly dismissed and to address her loss of income up to May 2018.

30th November 2018

Anne O’Connell
Fitzwilliam Hall
Fitzwilliam Place
Dublin 2

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