Drink – drive Doctor awarded £70K for unfair dismissal

A Doctor who was sacked on the grounds of capability has been awarded more than £70,000 in compensation.

This case highlights the need to ensure that you fully investigate. In this particular case this included medical evidence surrounding the case.

It is crucial that employers carry out a fair, thorough and prompt investigation and are able to prove that they have done so.

In the case of NHS Fife Health Board v Stockman, NHS Fife were unable to convince the Employment Tribunal that it had carried out a fair investigation by rejecting certain medical evidence.

If you need support in conducting investigations Einon HR is at hand please call us on 07764 948898

Conducting Investigations

There are many reasons for holding an internal investigation within the workplace. Investigations are held in order to clarify and establish the facts of an individual case and to assist in a decision as to whether there are grounds to call a disciplinary hearing, or dismiss a member of staff.

Employers could be held liable if a poor investigation leads to an unfair dismissal.

For further help and guidance please call Einon HR 07764 948898

 

Adverse weather conditions – Are you prepared?

Your employees have a duty to attend for work and carry out their duties in accordance with their contract of employment. However, under the Health & Safety at Work Act they are obliged to take care of their own and others mental and physical health, safety and well being.   If their attempts to travel into work during adverse weather present a risk to themselves or to others, they should contact you so you are fully aware of the difficulties they have experienced in their attempts to attend work.

If your employees are unable to attend work is it possible for them to work remotely, you may consider asking your employees to take some of their annual leave to cover their absence or you may have a provision for them to make up the time at a later date.

Where the business premises are open employers have no obligation to pay employees who are absent due to adverse weather conditions.  Likewise,  employees with parental or caring responsibilities have to deal with school closures should be  classified as ‘emergency time off for dependants’ a statutory entitlement which is unpaid.

If the business premises are closed as a result of the adverse weather conditions, unless the employment contract has a provision for laying off staff any period of absence should be paid.

Employers need to have the appropriate policies in place which deal with adverse weather conditions these should be prepared in advance and not in reaction to bad weather conditions.  In all cases policies should be clearly communicated to all staff.

Einon HR can ensure you have the appropriate policy in place, so why not give us a call today 07764 948898

 

 

 

Statutory Redundancy pay

The maximum amount of a weeks pay, used to calculate statutory redundancy pay is currently £464

If you are considering a restructure which may result in possible redundancies before taking first step and making a costly mistake, please make a call to Einon HR 07764 948898 where we can guide you through the process and offer you telephone advice for up to one hour.

 

October 2014 Employment law changes

National Minimum Wage:  Adult rate increases to £6.50 per hour, 18-20 year old rate increases to £5.13 per hour, 16 -17 year old rate increases to £3.79 per hour, apprentice rate increases to £2.73 per hour.  Employers who fail to meet their obligations to pay the NMW will face fines up to £20,000 per employee.

Ante-natal rights for fathers and partners to take unpaid time off (up to two occasions) to accompany a pregnant woman when attending ante-natal appointments will apply to all employees with no qualifying period. Agency workers will be entitled to the time off once they have reached the 12 week qualifying period under the Agency Workers Regulations 2010.

Equal pay audits: Where an employer loses an equal pay case, tribunals will be able to order the employer to carry out, and publish, an equal pay audit unless an exception applies.

Reserve forces: an employee who is dismissed exclusively (or mainly) because he or she is a member of the reserve force the normal two-year service requirement for bringing an unfair dismissal claim will not apply, and an employee may pursue a claim immediately in these circumstances.

Managing sickness during pregnancy

Employers need to take care when managing sickness absence during pregnancy, to ensure that they comply with their legal duties and protect the welfare of theirs employees.

Pregnancy – related illness is protected under the Equality Act 2010.

If you have a policy with regards to attendance, does this need to be modified ?

If you have a pregnant employee who is absent due to sickness, do you know whether or not the sickness is related to the pregnancy ?

It is also particularly important  to be aware of any pregnancy-related sickness as the expected birth date approaches, as any absence could automatically trigger the start of the maternity leave period.

Are any aspects of the pregnant employee’s work contributing to her illness ?

Are you paying the employee correctly? if there are a number of short -term absences from work which are due to pregnancy – related illness, these may be linked for the purposes of SSP.