ADJUDICATION OFFICER DECISION/RECOMMENDATION
Adjudication Reference: ADJ-00018852
Daithi O'Donnabhain Barry C. Gavlin and Son Solicitor
Eileen Hayes Hallissey & Partners Solicitors
Complaint/Dispute Reference No.
Date of Receipt
Complaint seeking adjudication by the Workplace Relations Commission under the Industrial Relations Acts
Complaint seeking adjudication by the Workplace Relations Commission under Schedule 2 of the Protected Disclosures Act, 2014
Complaint seeking adjudication by the Workplace Relations Commission under Section 18 of the Parental Leave Act 1998
Complaint seeking adjudication by the Workplace Relations Commission under section 6 of the Payment of Wages Act, 1991
Date of Adjudication Hearing: 25/04/2019
Workplace Relations Commission Adjudication Officer: Jim O'Connell
In accordance with Section 41 of the Workplace Relations Act and Section 13 of the Industrial Relations Acts 1969] following the referral of the complaint(s)/dispute(s) to me by the Director General, I inquired into the complaint dispute and gave the parties an opportunity to be heard by me and to present to me any evidence relevant to the complaint dispute.
The complaints under reference CA-00024115-002 and CA 00024115-003 were withdrawn.
The respondent’s representative made an application at the hearing stating that pursuant to Section 13.3(b)(ii) that her client was raising an objection to the dispute being heard by a Rights Commissioner.
The respondent was informed that they had 21 days for the date of notification to object to the hearing.
I find that no objection was received within the time specified and the hearing will go ahead.
Industrial Relations Acts
The claimant commenced employment with the respondent on the 20th March 2018, he was given notice on the 23rd August and finished his employment with the respondent on the 23rd August 2018.
He was paid €6333.33 gross per month.
The claimant submitted the following
- on the 7th June 2018, he raises the issue of paternity leave with the training Manager (RMCK) and she informed him that he was entitled to 3 days fully paid respondent leave along with 2 weeks statutory paternity leave.
- On the 6th July, the claimant submitted that at a meeting with his Manager (PM) he told him that his wife was due to give birth on the 9th August he raised the issue of taking paternity leave. It was submitted the Manager was not sure of the system, but he would investigate it. It was also submitted that the Manager (PM) did not appear too impressed that he (the claimant) was seeking to take such leave. A number of days later the claimant was advised by the respondent’s Manager (PM) that he would need to produce a stamped doctor’s report or a letter detailing the due date and for his wife details to be included in the certificate.
- On the 12th July, the claimant furnished the doctor's certificate to the Manager (PM)
- On the 17th July, claimant stated that he was informed by the Manager (PM) that there was no company pay for the time out. This was a surprise to him based on the information he had received from the respondents training Manager. On the same day, the claimant stated that the Manager (PM) sent an email to the Finance stating to stop the claimant’s pay around the paternity dates. It was submitted that the claimant had emailed the respondent’s Training Manager to confirm the conversation he had with her on the 7th June, but he received no reply.
- On the 19th July’18 having discussed the matter with his wife the claimant added that he could not afford to take two weeks off at his own expense and he requested 2 weeks holidays instead.
The Respondent (PM) refused this request as a holiday would be taken at Christmas when things were quiet.
It was submitted that after discussion with his Manager (PM) that he (the claimant) secured one week's annual leave.
The claimant believed that because he requested paternity leave he was penalised and his employment was terminated.
The respondent for their part denied that the claimant was penalised and submitted that a number of the meetings had taken place with the claimant on relation to his work performance and as he was in his probationary period they terminated his employment.
I find the only correspondence which was submitted by the respondent was a letter dated the 21st August 2018 where the claimant was invited to a meeting on the 23rd August and a letter dated the 23rd August which confirms the termination of his employment
I find that no other evidence was submitted by the respondent by way of minutes of meetings that had taken place between the claimant and his Manager (PM) about the claimant's job performance.
I find that the only notes provided were of the meeting dated the 23rd August (however they were dated the 24th August) where the claimant ‘s employment was terminated.
In LCR21798 the Labour Court found, however, that the employee on probation is still entitled to fair procedures and natural justice . I find that the employee was given not warning that his job was in jeopardy. The lack of minutes of meetings and other documentation to support the respondent's decision is paramount in fair procedures.
Based on the evidence I find that the paternity leave request played a role in the claimant's termination.
On that basis, I am making the following
Section 13 of the Industrial Relations Acts, 1969 requires that I make a recommendation in relation to the dispute.]
I award the claimant 1 months’ pay month's i.e. €6333 as compensation.
Payment of wages Act 1991
The claimant submitted that he was paid by the month and on the 24th August at the meeting when his employment was terminated the respondent stated, which is contained in the respondent notes of the meeting, that they would pay him a month in lieu.
The claimant stated he was paid by the month and he would have been paid for the month of august having worked almost the entire month and he believe that the respondent was paying him one additional month however they left him short 1 week’s
I find based on examination of the pay slip that the claimant was paid €6333.33 per month.
I find that the respondent deducted the sum of €1639.21. I find the claimant was entitled to be paid the month of August along with the months that were promised to him at the meeting on the 24th August.
Section 41 of the Workplace Relations Act 2015 requires that I make a decision in relation to the complaint(s)/dispute(s) in accordance with the relevant redress provisions under Schedule 6 of that Act.
I find the complaint is well founded and I award him the sum of €1639.21 gross.
Dated: 26th July 2019
Workplace Relations Commission Adjudication Officer: Jim O'Connell