SECTION 8A, UNFAIR DISMISSAL ACTS, 1977 TO 2015
KEELINGS LOGISTICS SOLUTIONS UNLIMITED COMPANY
(REPRESENTED BY IRISH BUSINESS AND EMPLOYERS' CONFEDERATION)
- AND -
(REPRESENTED BY TARA MURPHY, B.L., INSTRUCTED BY MCGUIGAN SOLICITORS)
Chairman: Mr Haugh
Employer Member: Mr Murphy
Worker Member: Mr McCarthy
1. Appeal of Adjudication Officer Decision No. ADJ-00009486.
2. The Complainant appealed the Adjudication Officer Decision No ADJ-00010387 to the Labour Court on 12 November 2018 in accordance with Section 8 of the Unfair Dismissals Act, 1977. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 2 April 2019. The following is the determination of the Court:-
Background to the Appeal
This matter came before the Court by way of an appeal by Mr Daniel Toth (‘the Complainant’) against a decision of an Adjudication Officer (ADJ-00009486, dated 25 October 2019) under the Unfair Dismissals Act 1977 (‘the Act’). The Complainant’s Notice of Appeal was received by the Court on 12 November 2018. The Court heard the appeal in Dublin on 2 April 2019.
The Complainant indicated to the Court in advance, through his representative, that he wished to confine his appeal to quantum only. Mr Conor O’Gorman for Keelings Logistics Solutions (‘the Respondent’) consented to the Complainant’s application in this regard. It is not necessary, therefore, to recite the facts that culminated in the Complainant’s dismissal save to say that he was dismissed for gross misconduct on 13 April 2017. The Complainant referred his complaint under the Act to the Workplace Relations Commission on 11 July 2017. The Adjudication Officer assigned to hear the case decided the complaint was well-founded and awarded compensation of €10,000.00.
Evidence of Loss and Mitigation
It was agreed at the outset of the hearing of the appeal that the Complainant’s average weekly wage when in the Respondent’s employment was €786.00. The Complainant gave evidence of his loss following his dismissal and his efforts to mitigate his loss. He told the Court that he did not secure alternative employment following his dismissal until January 2019 i.e. almost twenty-one months after his dismissal. However, there was a period of some eight months – between 5 January 2018 and 5 September 2018 – when he was unavailable for work as he underwent a medical procedure following which he required a long period of convalescence. The Complainant’s evidence is that his initial wage in the job he obtained in January 2019 was €382.20 per week.
The Complainant also told the Court that he believed he had made approximately thirty job applications in the period following his dismissal. He submitted documents that indicated he had made approximately twenty such applications, at least eight of which appear to have been made on the same date.
Having given detailed consideration to the parties’ submissions and the Complainant’s evidence in relation to his loss and efforts to mitigate that loss, the Court measures the appropriate compensation at €15,000.00. The Court in arriving at its decision has taken into account what it regards as the Complainant’s inadequate efforts to secure alternative employment in a period of near full employment and his unreasonable decision to confine his job applications to a very confined geographical area and to a restricted range of occupations.
The decision of the Adjudication Officer is varied accordingly.
The Court so determines.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
1 May 2019Deputy Chairman
Enquiries concerning this Determination should be addressed to Ceola Cronin, Court Secretary.