An employee working as a truck driver abandoned his employment after he failed to report to work.

The Employment Relations Authority held that the employee had breached his individual employment agreement and caused a direct loss to his employer. Accordingly, the employee was held liable for those losses.

The employee’s absence from work meant that the employer was unable to fulfill its contract with its client. This resulted in a loss of income for the employer as well as an additional fee which was charged by the client for having to hire another truck and driver.

The employee also breached his contract by charging over $1,000 of fuel to his employer for his own personal vehicle, and by spending almost $200 on unauthorised phone calls. The employee failed to display his current road user charge label, and exceeded the total number of occupants specified on his truck’s loading certificate. The employer was issued an $800 fine as a result.

The ERA ordered that the employee pay his employer over $4,000 for the loses caused by the breaches of his employment agreement.