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Employment and Industrial Relations

The importance of disciplinary proceedings prior to dismissal

In a decision delivered on the 23rd of March 2022, case number 3833/CC, the Industrial Tribunal emphasised the importance of disciplinary proceedings in termination of employment cases. The employee had been dismissed on the spot following an argument with one of the company's directors. The Tribunal stated that in cases where the accusations against the employee will lead to the termination of employment, the principle of 'audi alteram parte' should always be respected and that thereby the employee should be given an opportunity to defend his position. There may be cases where an immediate dismissal, without there being any proceedings,…
Christine Calleja
24th March 2022
Employment and Industrial Relations

Reinstatement of Employee after Finding of Unfair Dismissal

This article was written by​ Dr Christine Calleja and Tessa Borg Bartolo​In a recent judgment, 67/2020 LM, the Court of Appeal dealt with a case where an employee was claiming to have been unfairly dismissed by his employer on account of a medical condition - Obstructive Sleep Apnoea. The employee had been diagnosed with this condition by a professional in the field after multiple warnings were given to him by his employer in this regard. The employer had brought to his attention the numerous occasions in which he was found sleeping while at work, as well as other instances in…
Christine Calleja
3rd December 2021
Employment and Industrial Relations

Transposition of the EU Whistleblower Directive into the Protection of the Whistleblower Act, Chapter 527 of the Laws of Malta

This article was written by​ Dr Petra Attard and Dr Martina BonniciThe legislation currently regulating whistleblower protection in Malta is the Protection of the Whistleblower Act, Chapter 527 of the Laws of Malta (the ''Act'') which came into force on the 15th September 2013. While the Whistleblowing Directive EU 2019/1937 (the "Directive") has not yet been transposed into Maltese law, Bill 249 of 2021, titled An Act to Amend the Protection of the Whistleblower Act (the "Amending Act"), published on the 15th November 2021 seeks to amend the Act in order to align it with the Directive. It is yet…
Petra Attard
30th November 2021
Employment and Industrial Relations

No Discrimination When the Employer Pursues a Genuine Occupational Need

This article was written by​ Dr Christine Calleja & Tessa Borg BartoloA landmark judgment of the Court of Justice of the European Union ('the CJEU') in joined cases C-804/18 and C-341/19 was decided on the 15th July 2021 relating to the employer's ability to enforce certain conditions on employees in order to present a neutral image at the workplace. The facts of the cases involved individuals in Germany who were instructed by their respective employers not to wear the traditional Islamic headscarf (hijab) at their place of work. After the decisions of the local German courts were delivered, a preliminary ruling…
Christine Calleja
16th September 2021
Employment and Industrial Relations

Court of Justice of the European Union Condemns UK for Breaching Ambient Air Quality Limits

On the 4th March 2021, the Seventh Chamber of the Court of Justice of the European Union issued its decision on an important matter related to the breach of ambient air quality legislation by the UK government (European Commission v. United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, c-664/18). This case is only one among several others filed by the Commission against EU Member States, including France, Italy, Bulgaria and Hungary. Directive 2008/50/EC on ambient air quality and cleaner air for Europe required Member States of the EU to adopt the air pollution limits contained within its Annexes by the…
Mark Soler
8th March 2021
Employment and Industrial Relations

Ex-employee of the St John Co-Cathedral Foundation awarded €23,000 in damages for unfair dismissal

An ex-employee of the St John's Co-Cathedral Foundation instituted proceedings before the Industrial Tribunal seeking compensation for unfair dismissal. The defendant Foundation argued that the ex-employee had committed several breaches throughout the years and that the final action of insubordination on his part had left the Foundation with no option other than to summarily dismiss him. The Tribunal commented that whilst the defendant had argued that the ex-employee had committed several abusive practices, its reaction towards such alleged abuses had always been lenient. A point worth mentioning is the fact that the disciplinary board which had been set up to…
Christine Calleja
19th February 2021