How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Ben Jones Your Own Question
Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 49454
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
29905560
Type Your Employment Law Question Here...
Ben Jones is online now

I was dismissed yesterday for gross misconduct of theft and

This answer was rated:

I was dismissed yesterday for gross misconduct of theft and deception from my part time job, I don’t wish to deny those allegations, however I’m not sure the way in which it was carried out was correct. On Wednesday I received an email from my manager saying she’d like to ‘catch up’ with me on Thursday, the next day. When I arrived at the agreed place I was taken into an office with both managers. By the end of this meeting which When i asked what it was, they said it was ‘a talk’ I was dismissed with immediate effect, lose all outstanding pay and holiday, and banned from all sites owned by the Employer, use of systems, company email, etc.
During the meeting I was threatened that if i didn’t agree to all allegations against me that I would be taken out of the site in handcuffs with the police involved, and I would never get another job as my name would be plastered over Facebook, LinkedIn, etc by him. He also asked me at one point how much money would I give the company to prevent him from going to the police and telling everyone.
During the talk as well I was sworn at, and at one point had to move my chair back due to how close he got to me, telling me this conversation is going in a bad way, and he didn’t like my attitude. No minutes were taken, I didn’t have a witness, and I was unaware why I was going into a meeting. The meeting lasted roughly an hour.
At the end of the of this, the only paperwork I was given was the banning letter, and due to a family member working at the site as well they said to me, ‘do you want to speak to the family member or we will’. I spoke to him, however I was later told by this family member they spoke to him anyway and told all details, they also asked him for my address, which he didn’t give.
I would like to know if I should leave this, due to them potentially going to the police and producing evidence of the theft, which could make it worse for me, what could happen from taking this further, or is what they did perfectly legal in this situation for them not involve police?

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.

How long had you worked there for?

Customer: replied 3 months ago.
Since September 2013

Hi there, regardless of what you had done that led to the dismissal, and even if you had admitted the offence in question, the employer still has a legal duty to follow a fair disciplinary procedure. That is because if you have over 2 years service you have unfair dismissal protection so the employer must ensure any dismissal is procedurally fair. This would have required them to investigate the allegations, invite you to a formal disciplinary hearing, giving you notice in advance of the allegations and the evidence, allowed you to be accompanied by a colleague or trade union rep and given you the right to appeal. It is clear that hardly any of this occurred here so the dismissal is very likely to be unfair.

You are able to consider challenging them for unfair dismissal in the employment tribunal. However, here are a couple of important points about this:

1. If you did make a claim they can still go to the police. They did not have to inform them but if they wanted to they are entirely within their legal right to do so. Therefore, you may find that in response of you making a claim (which is your legal right) they can report this to the police (which is also their legal right)
2. If a claim proceeds but the employer can show that has they followed a fair procedure the outcome would have been the same, your compensation could potentially be reduced by up to 100%.

Saying that, you are legally entitled to be paid up for any work undertaken up to the date if dismissal and be paid for accrued holidays. The employer cannot take these away from you and they won't be included in the reduced compensation as mentioned above. So this is something you can also consider making a claim for, but in the same way as the unfair dismissal claim, it could prompt them to contact the police over your offences.

So in the end it is all about what is more important for you - challenging the dismissal and seeking some compensation about this or avoiding any police involvement and this going more public than it already is.

Please take a quick second to leave a positive rating for the service so far by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars above. I can continue answering follow up questions and in particular can also discuss the steps you need to take if you are to pursue this further. There is no extra cost for this - leaving your rating now will not close the question and means we can still continue this discussion. Thank you

Ben Jones and 3 other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 months ago.
Thanks for your reply,what would be the gain out of taking this further, and what may I expect at the end of it? also if they did take it to the police, which I’m not sure if they would want to do for the publicity, what could be the outcome of that, I’m not sure if it’d be a good idea to potentially involve the police for the future, however what they did I don’t feel is right and could this be taken into account too if it was to be investigated?Thank you.

If you did take it further then you are claiming for unfair dismissal. In such a claim you are mainly compensated for any future loss of earnings incurred as a result of this dismissal. So for example if it has taken you a couple of months to find a comparable job then you could be seeking to recover the loss of wages for those two months when you were out of work and not earning. But as mentioned such compensation can be reduced if they can show that the outcome would have been the same even if they had followed the dismissals procedure in accordance with the law.

I cannot tell you what the outcome exactly would be if they went to the police because this is a criminal matter whereas I am an employment lawyer, but theft from an employer is a breach of a position of trust so it is usually treated more seriously. If you wanted more detailed advice on the criminal aspect of things you are welcome to post a separate question on our site as we do have criminal specialists on there.

Customer: replied 3 months ago.
Okay, thank you very much for your help and advice.

you are welcome and all the best