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GabrielP428, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 325
Experience:  Expert
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I would like some advice as I am about to undergo a

Customer Question

Hi, i would like some advice as I am about to undergo a disciplinary procedure at work
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: uk
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: none. I am due to attend the disciplinary meeting on Tuesday
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: no
Submitted: 9 days ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  GabrielP428 replied 9 days ago.

Hello and thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will be very pleased to assist you. I am sorry to hear about your problem. I'm a practising solicitor in England and Wales with 9 years of experience and worked in the legal sector since 2008. Please be aware that although I will endeavour to reply to you promptly, may not be available to respond immediately. The site will notify you as soon as I respond. I look forward to working with you to answer your question fully. Please note I can guide you, just answer does not provide legal representation as such no legal client/ lawyer relationship is formed.

If you would like a call to discuss this further, please let me know

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Expert:  GabrielP428 replied 9 days ago.

Hi, I am sorry to hear about your experience at work.

Can you tell me how long you have been employed there?

Can you tell me what the reason for the disciplinary procedure is?

Customer: replied 9 days ago.
18 months. I sent some jabber messages describing a colleague as a “chump”.
Customer: replied 9 days ago.
To another colleague)
Expert:  GabrielP428 replied 9 days ago.

Thank you. It doesn't sound like a very serious or something that can be described as a misconduct

In order to justify that disciplinary action on grounds of misconduct is fair, the law requires that the employer does the following:

- Conducts a reasonable investigation;

- Follows a fair disciplinary procedure; and

- Shows they had reasonable grounds to believe the employee was guilty

In addition, the employer is expected to follow the ACAS Code of Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance procedures, which can be incorporated into their own disciplinary policy. It sets out various steps along the process that the employer has to follow to ensure the process is fair.

When deciding on the appropriate penalty, the employer should consider the nature and seriousness of the offence, any mitigating factors and the employee's length of service and disciplinary record. Other aspects, like expressing remorse and apologising and there being evidence the issues were innocent or unintentional should also help to a degree. Unless the offence was one of gross misconduct (which it does not appear to be), ACAS recommends that the employee is issued with a written warning for a first offence.

In summary, the requirements of proof are not as stringent as in criminal law and an employer is not expected to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the alleged misconduct had definitely occurred. A decision on the balance of probabilities will be sufficient and disciplinary action will be fair if the employer can show that it had met the above criteria, namely conducting a reasonable investigation, following a fair procedure and holding a genuine belief that the employee was guilty. Finally, it must show that the penalty was one that a reasonable employer would have taken in the circumstances.

If there is evidence that the employer has not followed a fair procedure as outlined above, the outcome can be formally appealed with the employer.

If the disciplinary results in dismissal, then you will not be able to bring a claim for unfair dismissal because you do not have 2 years' continuous service with the employer.

Customer: replied 9 days ago.
Thanks. I have a question - from reading the company documentation it seems very likely that I would forfeit the bonus due to be paid in June if the procedure were to result in a warning (which I believe itself is likely). In that case, I would therefore like to resign & serve my 1 month notice. But if I were to resign as soon as I were to receive the warning, would they likely force me to leave there & then? Do you think I could ask hr this question before the hearing?
Customer: replied 9 days ago.
Plus I also described the same colleague as a “ponce” which is a stronger word. I should’ve said that.
Customer: replied 9 days ago.
Also on jabber
Customer: replied 9 days ago.
Sorry are you still there?
Expert:  GabrielP428 replied 9 days ago.
I will reply shortly.
Expert:  GabrielP428 replied 9 days ago.
They cannot force you to leave earlier than the notice in your contract of employment. .
Customer: replied 9 days ago.
Thanks. There were six jabbers in all - 3 chumps, one ponce, one “blah blah” (to portray him as talking too long) and one criticising his Japanese. Sent over a period of 4 months. Sorry I should’ve mentioned these. But my real question related to the resignation. Thanks
Customer: replied 9 days ago.
Ah ok, when u say they cannot force me to leave earlier than the contract says - the hearing is on Tuesday, but if I were to resign on Monday (before it happens) could they not say that as the hearing hasn’t happened yet, they could force me to go there & then?
Expert:  GabrielP428 replied 9 days ago.
Thank you.If your actions are found to be gross misconduct, they can dismiss you there and then.
Customer: replied 9 days ago.
As one of the potential outcomes of the hearing is dismissal
Customer: replied 9 days ago.
I know one of the potential outcomes is gross misconduct & hence immediate dismissal - but if I resign before the hearing, can they force me to go there & then? I would think not, but perhaps they could do it to protect themselves? What do u think?
Expert:  GabrielP428 replied 9 days ago.
It could be gross misconduct, given it happened on several occasions and potentially discriminating.
Customer: replied 9 days ago.
Does my question make sense? Sorry !
Expert:  GabrielP428 replied 9 days ago.
Sorry. Before the hearing, they cannot force you to go there and then.
Customer: replied 9 days ago.
Thanks. If I resign before the hearing do you think it should still go ahead?
Expert:  GabrielP428 replied 9 days ago.
It is unlikely to go ahead as because you resigned. However, you will still be there for another month as the notice requires. So they could decide to go ahead if they intend to dismiss you for gross misconduct.
I would write to them or speak to HR for clarification.
Expert:  GabrielP428 replied 8 days ago.

Thank you so much for using Just Answer. If you have further questions, please do feel free to ask them in this thread.