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Most employers are aware of the importance of given warnings (and therefore a second or third chance) to employees prior to dismissal. However, this may sometimes backfire if it goes on for too long.

In an Industrial Tribunal case decided on the 19 February, 2020 (case number 3289/CC), the Tribunal considered that the employee in question had been warned several times about his behavior and mistakes, however, according to the Tribunal, the management had not shown a strong position that repetition of similar behavior could lead to termination of employment. The nearly indulgent behavior of the company over a period of years could have led the employee to believe that his shortcomings were minor. Not taking a strong approach in cases of repeated misbehavior attenuates guilt and if the employer is always lenient, he would not be justified when he then decides to terminate employment.

What is interesting to note is the compensation awarded by the Tribunal, following the recent trend in Industrial Tribunal decisions to consider the actual losses suffered by the employee. The Tribunal took into account (although not in a precise mathematical calculation) the period of unemployment following dismissal and the fact that the employee had not registered for employment with JobsPlus during this period. The sum of €13,302 was awarded as compensation to the ex-employee. 


This document does not purport to give legal, financial or tax advice. Should you require further information or legal assistance, please do not hesitate to contact Dr. Christine Calleja