It has been reported recently that the Employment Appeals Tribunal had made a decision against St. Coleman’s (Claremorris Credit Union) in relation to an employee that they had. The Tribunal found that the employee had been unfairly dismissed. In this case the Tribunal has decided that the employee should be re-instated with her employer. Normally if the Tribunal finds that the claimant has been unfairly dismissed an award is made. A Tribunal can award up to two years salary. It is very rare that re-instatement would be sought and granted in circumstances where a Tribunal would take the view that the employment relationship has broken down. For example in 2013 out of 1,669 unfair dismissal cases re-instatement has only been granted on two occasions, so you can see the percentage it is not customary to do so.
In this particular decision the majority view of the Tribunal noted that there were no procedures adopted. The dismissal was fully and substantially unfair and it was the claimant’s preference to have her job back. It will be interesting to see what happens here because there are a number weeks left for the Credit Union to appeal to the Circuit Court and if that happens then the whole decision could be reversed.
Employment Department, Healy O’Connor Solicitors