An employee brought a claim of unjustifiable dismissal to the Employment Authority. The employer argued the employee had been properly dismissed, as they relied on the 90 day trial provision in the employment contract to justify that.

Although an employer is able to dismiss an employee during a trial period, and the employee is precluded from taking an action against the employer for unjustifiable dismissal in such circumstances, here the Employment Authority found the employer was unable to rely on the trial period to justify the summary dismissal.

The dismissal was found to have occurred outside the 90 day trial period by a few days. The law does not allow a trial period in excess of 90 days. As the trial period had expired the employer was unable to rely on it  to justify the dismissal.

The Employment Relations Authority found the employer’s actions were not what a fair and reasonable employer could have done in all the circumstances at the time the dismissal occurred. The employee was successful in her claim for unjustifiable dismissal and was awarded five months loss of wages and $12,000 for hurt and humiliation plus costs.