The Employment Relations Authority has upheld an employee’s personal grievance claim for unjustified dismissal following an argument over work hours.

The employee had completed their hours for the day, but the employer wanted them to keep working due to a shortage of employees.  The employee did not agree, and the employer told them if they left they would not be back.

That was held to be a dismissal.  Another manager attempted to resolve matters and withdrew the dismissal, but the original manager refused to have the employee back in their supervisor role.  That was held to also be an unjustified dismissal as no proper process was followed.

The employee was awarded $13,750 lost wages and $27,500 compensation for the dismissal.  There were also orders for payment of the minimum wage for extra hours worked and for holiday pay not correctly paid.

Failing to follow a fair and reasonable process cost the employer over $40,000 in this case.  If the employer had acted reasonably there would have been no grounds for a dismissal and the employment relationship could have continued.

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