Unfair Dismissal

Unfair Dismissal

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You can be assured Lawson-West’s solicitors keep up to date with the latest legal developments and changes to bring you the best advice.

Lawson-West’s expert employment solicitors and lawyers have significant experience in unfair dismissal cases.  

Unfair dismissal is the most common type of claim brought in Employment Tribunals.
If you have been dismissed and your employer has not followed a fair dismissal procedure, did not investigate the disciplinary matter properly and failed to consider alternatives to dismissal, you may have an unfair dismissal claim.

To proceed with an unfair dismissal claim:

  • You must be an employee (rather than an independent contractor or self employed),

  • and must have been working continuously for at least two years (although this requirement is subject to exceptions, for example, if the dismissal was pregnancy related).

What makes a Dismissal Unfair?

Under the Employment Rights Act, employers can argue that an employee has been dismissed for a "potentially fair reason" i.e. for a specified reason such as misconduct or ill-health.

When looking at whether the dismissal is fair or unfair will depend on whether an Employment Tribunal considers that the employer acted reasonably in all the circumstances.

If an employer falls short of the requirement to consider alternatives to an employee's dismissal such as demotion, deployment or other disciplinary action, or fails to carry out a proper investigation, an employee's dismissal may be regarded as unfair.

Most importantly, employers are required to adopt a 'fair procedure' in dismissing an employee. Under this procedure, employers need to write to an employee detailing the reasons why they are considering disciplinary action and that it can lead to their dismissal, invite the employee to a meeting, allow them to be accompanied to the meeting by either a trade union representative, a fellow worker or an official employed by a trade union. It is important to give the employee an opportunity to state their case, answer any allegations against them, ask questions, present evidence and call witnesses.

If dismissed, the employee must be offered a right of appeal against the dismissal.

An employer’s failure to adhere to this procedure may mean that an employee may be entitled to 'uplift' on any compensation, should their claims be successful.   

If you find yourself in a situation where you have faced unfair dismissal, we can help. Please remember there are strict time limits in Employment claims and you should take good free legal advice as soon as possible.

In addition to No Win No Fee, Lawson-West solicitors act for our clients on a variety of other funding arrangements including Legal Expenses insurance funding. We can assess your case to decide which is the best funding option for you.

With offices in Leicester and Market Harborough our employment solicitors and lawyers can discuss your employment law claim at any of our branches. In addition, we are a national provider of expert employment law advice and welcome a free discussion with you regarding your circumstances and potential claim.

If you believe you have a situation where you require free legal advice, please contact us on telephone 0116 212 1000 or 01858 445 480, alternatively fill in the free Contact Us form and we will get in touch as soon as possible.


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Case Study:  Employment - Gideon's Story