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Unfair Dismissal

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Was dismissing a managing director without holding an investigation meeting unfair, the basis for dismissal being that he had been found not to have been a credible witness at an employment tribunal?

Not on those facts, held the EAT in Radia v Jeffries International, dismissing that part of the Claimant's appeal. However, not offering an appeal did make the dismissal unfair.

The Claimant was the MD of a FCA-regulated financial services company. He had brought two tribunal claims against his employer. In the first, the tribunal found, in several areas, his evidence not to be credible, and him evasive. On receiving the judgment, the employer suspended the Claimant pending a disciplinary, without holding an investigation meeting. Relying on the tribunal's findings, and the Claimant's responses, he was dismissed after a disciplinary, at which he had disputed the tribunal's findings against him, rather than issues over the allegations themselves.

The EAT held that there was no error of law in the tribunal finding the dismissal fair on that point; the question was whether the decision was within the range of reasonable responses. The two stages of investigation and disciplinary meetings are not required by statute or even the Acas Code, and the tribunal's findings were open to it in this case.

However, on the second ground of appeal, the tribunal had not made sufficient findings to justify its decision that having no appeal would have made no difference, so the dismissal was unfair.

Thanks to Ed McFarlane of Deminos HR for preparing this case summary.