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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, could be justified, especially when the breach committed by the employee is serious and obvious. However, immediate dismissal would only be justified in very limited instances.

The Tribunal awarded the sum of seven thousand euro (€7,000) by way of compensation for what was considered to be an unfair dismissal. In arriving at this amount the Tribunal took into consideration the fact that the employee had been employed with the company for only nine months, he was still 26 years old and he possessed excellent academic and practical skills which would make it relatively easy for him to find alternative employment which would be comparable to that which he had with the defendant company. In its decision the Tribunal quoted the Court of Appeal which has in the past stated that in deciding on compensation the Tribunal enjoys an element of discretion and should act as a ‘bonus paterfamilias‘. 

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.