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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 61795
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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I run a small consultancy and we have recently hired a

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Good morning, I run a small consultancy and we have recently hired a junior member of staff. I was not convinced through the interview process but allowed my colleague to make the final decision as she would be working for him. She has been with us for 1 day and her behaviour towards myself and the other 2 team members has not been good or professional. Whilst it is nothing that would qualify for gross misconduct it has confirmed my initial feelings that she is not the right fir for our small team. What would i need to do in order to dismiss her during her first week due to these behaviour issues. She is on a 6 month probation period with 1 weeks notice either way during this period. We have a disc process but it is not contractual. Thanks
JA: Have you discussed the termination with a manager or HR? Or with a lawyer?
Customer: No
JA: What is your employment status? Are you an employee, freelancer, consultant or contractor? Do you belong to a union?
Customer: I run the business and a director, the employee is working under a traditional contract
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: no thank you

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

Customer: replied 3 months ago.
Good morning

Please explain what has happened exactly for you to want to now dismiss her?

Customer: replied 3 months ago.
Her behaviour and language has been unacceptable and has offended all 3 (including me) of our existing team members. Within her first day she has;1) questioned the fit out of our office and tried to suggest that we should seek alternative bespoke furniture with significant costs 2) when inducted challenged why she should do timesheets, question and challenge why they are done daily and try to insist we should do them weekly, challenge the timesheet system we use and when my colleague explained it is linked to our accounting system, still try and suggest alternatives we should use 3) when a colleague picked her something up for lunch refused to take it as it was not exactly what she had asked for 4) insist that we get a microwave in the office for her lunch 5) complained several times about how uncomfortable the office chairs are. Whilst i accept these are all minor things she has upset every member of the team on day 1 and I do not believe she is the right cultural fit. I also feel myself and my colleague are going to waste a considerable amount of time responding to and dealing with issues that should not be challenged by a junior member of staff.

Thank you. I will get back to you with my answer as soon as I can, which will be at some point today. The system will notify you when this happens. Please do not reply in the meantime as this may unnecessarily delay my response. Many thanks.

Many thanks for your patience. If she has been continuously employed at her place of work for less than 2 years then her employment rights will be somewhat limited. Most importantly, she will not be protected against unfair dismissal. This means that you can dismiss her for more or less any reason, and without following a fair procedure, as long as the decision is not based on a reason which makes a dismissal automatically unfair. These include:

  • Discrimination due to a protected characteristic (i.e. because of gender, race, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation, etc.)
  • Taking, or trying to take, leave for family reasons including pregnancy, maternity leave, parental leave, adoption leave or leave for dependants

However, if the dismissal had nothing to do with any of the above exceptions, she would not be able to challenge it. In that case her only protection would be if she was dismissed in breach of contract. That would usually happen if she was not paid any contractual notice period due to her (unless she was dismissed for gross misconduct, where no notice would be due). You would either have to allow her to work that notice period and pay her as normal, or instead have to pay her in lieu of notice, where she is paid for the equivalent of the notice pay but her employment is terminated immediately. The latter may be the more sensible option in the circumstances so all you have to do is issue her with notice of dismissal, send her on her way and ensure you pay her what she is contractually due.

Does this answer your query?

Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. Could you please let me know if it has answered your original question? You can simply reply on here with a quick ‘Yes, thanks’ and I won’t bother you again. Thank you

Customer: replied 3 months ago.
Apologies, yes thank you.

All the best

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