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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
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When claims of bringing a company into disrepute following

Resolved Question:

When claims of bringing a company into disrepute following a private video being uploaded on to youtube and an employee is suspended, can the allegation still be upheld at a separate disciplinary hearing without the video itself being available as evidence ?
Basically the video on youtube no longer exists, its one employees word against a managers therefore can discipline still be administered without any video evidence being present at the hearing ?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Ben Jones : Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How long has the employee accused of the misconduct worked there for? Please note I am mobile today so may not be able to respond fully until later on today. Thanks
Customer:

Hi, sorry for late response. The employee is myself and ive been there roughly 8-9 years.

Ben Jones :

Hi, thanks for getting back to me. It is certainly possible for the issue to be dealt with under a disciplinary even in the absence of the video. Of course the ideal situation in terms of fairness is if the video could be used as evidence but even if that is not possible the employer could use whatever evidence is still available in relation to that matter. However, in employment law the employer is only expected to conduct a reasonable investigation and then take a fair and reasonable decision based on their genuine belief of what happened. So even in the absence of direct evidence a decision can be made but the less clear the allegations are and the more uncertain the evidence, the more the employer has to ensure they act in a reasonable manner and they need to consider the available evidence more carefully than usual in order to reach a fair decision. So this would all be covered in the investigation, for example they can ask direct and specific questions to try and determine whether the specific allegations are just a person’s own word or if they were basing that on actual evidence which existed – it would require probing and specific queries to determine with some degree of certainty whether the evidence they say existed did actually exist and what its contents were. But in general, yes, it is possible to conduct a disciplinary even in the absence of direct evidence, subject to the above rules.

Hope this clarifies your position? If you could please let me know that would be great, thank you

Customer:


Many thanks for all the info Ben. MY suspension has been put down to allegations that I UPLOADED a video on to youtube which apparently,... according to my managers point of view,...... brings the company into disrepute, As the disciplinary hearing cannot be held by my manager its down to someone else to decide if the allegations are true or not and without any video evidence to back the claim up as the video no longer exists. I've flatly denied all the claims that the video did bring the company into disrepute [and if you saw it you would understand why because it does no such thing] however its the fact of it being uploaded on to a social media site which seems to be the main issue now but there is no evidence or proof what so ever to determine it ever was or who did plus having no video either to back the claims of the actual content being iffy all they have as evidence is my managers allegations to something that isn't even there, if that makes sense.

Ben Jones :

It does, thank you. As mentioned the employer can investigate the matter and even bring a disciplinary charge against you for that, but in the absence of any direct evidence and this being just one person's word against another's they must be very cautious as to what they decide to do as a result. For example, a dismissal is unlikely to be seen as fair considering the lack of evidence although legally all they need to show is that they had conducted a reasonable investigation, that they had a genuine belief you were guilty and that the outcome was one a reasonable employer would have taken, considering your length of service and your disciplinary record.

Customer:

Thanks for the quick response Ben and of course for all your help,... its much appreciated.

Ben Jones :

you are most welcome

Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 46797
Experience: Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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