ADJUDICATION OFFICER DECISION
Adjudication Decision Reference: ADJ-00001545
Complaint(s)/Dispute(s) for Resolution:
Complaint/Dispute Reference No.
Date of Receipt
Complaint seeking adjudication by the Workplace Relations Commission under Section 8 of the Unfair Dismissals Act, 1977
Date of Adjudication Hearing: 02/11/2016
Workplace Relations Commission Adjudication Officer: Michael McEntee
In accordance with Section 8(1B) of the Unfair Dismissals Act, 1977 following the referral of the complaint(s)/dispute(s) to me by the Director General, I inquired into the complaint(s)/dispute(s) and gave the parties an opportunity to be heard by me and to present to me any evidence relevant to the complaint(s)/dispute(s).
Complainant’s Submission and Presentation:
The Complainant was dismissed on the 27th November 2015 but not notified until the 23rd December 2015. No procedures at all were followed and the Dismissal is completely unfair. Like wise if it is contended that a Dismissal Award can be rebutted by way of Redundancy no procedures as set out in statute and practice were followed.
Pertinent facts were that the Complaint had been injured on the 11th June 2015 while delivering goods to a major Store. He remained unfit until the date of his Dismissal. Correspondence and oral evidence were given in support. Legal arguments to support their submissions were presented to the hearing by the Complainant’s representatives.
Respondent’s Submission and Presentation:
The Respondent did not attend the hearing. From previous correspondence I was satisfied that he was properly on Notice of the Hearing.
A note from the Respondent was received at the WRC on the 1st February 2016. This stated that the Respondent Company has lost its major contract. All staff had been issued with Protective Notice and Final Notice. The Complaint had been regularly updated by the MD throughout his absence period.
The suggestion of an Unfair Dismissal had no foundation as all employed at the Respondent Company had lost their means of livelihood. There was no question of any Redundancies being “Sham” as stated by the Complainant.
Section 8(1B) of the Unfair Dismissals Act, 1977 requires that I make a decision in relation to the unfair dismissal claim consisting of a grant of redress in accordance with section 7 of the 1977 Act.
Issues for Decision:
Did an Unfair Dismissal take place? Is there a Redundancy Rebuttal defence open?
to the Respondent?
Legislation involved and requirements of legislation:
Unfair Dismissals Act, 1977 and guidance from S.I. 146 of 2000 Code of Practice on Grievance and Disciplinary Procedures / Industrial Relations Act , 1990
The Respondent did not attend the hearing never the less his written note of the 1st February 2016 set out his basic case.
Notwithstanding this there was absolutely no evidence presented of any attempts to follow any accepted procedures either in relation to an Unfair Dismissal Claim or a Redundancy claim.
Accordingly I find that an Unfair Dismissal has taken place. A question of a Redundancy Rebuttal defence is not valid as no procedures were followed here either. Legal Precedent has clearly been that Respondent financial difficulties do not excuse the need for fair procedures and practices.
As the Complainant has requested Compensation I make a Redress award of One Years Remuneration.
Taking the P45 exhibited in evidence and the statement of the Complainant on his claim form I estimated the value of a years nett pay to be € 26,500. (52 weeks pay by € 508.35 nett pay). This is the amount of the award being made.
Dated: 12 December 2016