Dismissal from work

Being dismissed from work is a major issue for an employee and a cause of many employment claims.


Dismissal triggers a number of employment rights both in the process that leads up to dismissal and in the dismissal itself.  Again there is a split between the contractual and the statutory rights.


Contractual rights

When an employer decides to dismiss an employee they are taking the legal step of terminating the contract of employment. 


To do this lawfully they must observe the terms of the contract - failing to do so gives rise to a so-called 'wrongful dismissal' (not to be confused with an unfair dismissal which is a statutory right - see below).


The employer must therefore follow any contractual disciplinary process, give the correct period of contractual notice, pay holiday pay or other benefits the employee is contractually entitled to.


Further information on wrongful dismissal


Stautory rights

Several statutory rights may arise on dismissal.  Whether they are relevant will depend on a number of criteria for each right:


Statutory notice

Unfair dismissal

Payment of accrued holiday pay

Redundancy payment


Resignation as a dismissal

Sometimes and employee is treated in such a way by their employer that they feel they have to leave the employment.  If the reason they have to leave amounts to a fundamental breach of the employment contract by the employer then the resignation may become a 'constructive dismissal' and allow a claim of unfair dismissal to be made.


Further information on constructive dismissal

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