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Forced Retirement Was Discrimination on Grounds of Age

Another recent case dealing with the issue of the forced retirement of a legal secretary who had 40 years service, once again highlights the difficulties that employers face in implementing retirements, when they have not established a fixed retirement age, on objective grounds, either contractually or through custom and practice (Ref ADJ - 00016645).

Employment (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2018

The much talked about Employment (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2018 finally comes into effect today 4th March 2019, and whilst the focus of discussion to date has often been on the restriction on zero hours contracts, there are other noteworthy provisions being introduced that employers need to be aware of.

Right To Legal Representation At Disciplinary Hearings

The Court of Appeal decision last October in Irish Rail v McKelvey has provided some much needed clarity for HR practitioners on the issue of whether legal representation should be permitted at internal disciplinary hearings, following the confusion caused by the earlier decision of Eagar J in Lyons v Longford & Westmeath ETB.

Dismissal Was Not Due To Redundancy & Related to Complainant's Pregnancy

A recent decision of an Adjudication Officer under the Employment Equality Acts 1998 - 2015 found that the Complainant had made a prima facie case of discrimination on grounds of gender, and had been dismissed due to her pregnancy and not due to reasons of redundancy as purported by the Respondent Company.The Complainant was awarded €14k compensation.

€90k Awarded For Probationary Period Dismissal

This recommendation by the Labour Court (LCR21798) is a very useful reminder about the significant potential cost of not adhering to fair procedures when terminating employment during the probationary period.

Trouble At The Christmas Party !

With the Christmas party season about to get underway this weekend, employers need to be aware of the potential costs of not dealing correctly with issues that may arise during workplace social events.

Re-engagement Ordered By Labour Court After Flawed Investigation And Disciplinary Process.

The determination published earlier this year in the SSP Ireland v Albert Fordjour provides some useful lessons for employers on the necessity of adopting fair procedures at all stages of the investigation and disciplinary processes and in particular around the interviewing of proposed witnesses (Ref UDD 1758).

Fixed Term Contracts

Whilst case law clearly indicates that the use of Fixed Term Contracts can be problematic, provided used correctly and in line with the provisions of the Protection of Employees (Fixed Term Work) Act 2003, they can provide employers with a suitable mechanism to deal with non permanent resourcing requirements.

Gross Misconduct Dismissal Held To Be Fair

The Labour Court recently rejected an appeal by a hotel worker that his summary dismissal for breach of IT & Security Policies was unfair and confirmed that the decision to dismiss was within the range of responses of a reasonable employer with regard to the employee's conduct and that his dismissal was not unfair (Determination UDD 1839).

Maximum Working Hours

The Labour Court recently upheld a decision of an Adjudication Officer in respect of a claim that an employee had been regularly working excessive hours beyond her contracted 40 hours per week, in breach of the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997.

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