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What Is Constructive Dismissal And How Should You Deal With It As An Employer?

There is never an easy way to deal with conflict in the workplace, particularly not when it comes to ensuring that you deal with an issue quickly while maintaining the professional reputation of your company or business.

Issues which arise between employer and employee can either be resolved inhouse, as part of a negotiation settlement, or via the more formal process of an employment tribunal – with the help and support of a dedicated London employment lawyer who can represent you and your business.

But before we get into the complexity of constructive dismissal cases and how you should handle them, what exactly constitutes such a case and what are the most common causes?

What Constitutes A Constructive Dismissal Case?

In very general terms, a constructive dismissal case is one where an employee resigns their position in response to a material breach of their employment contract. This can arise because of a discrepancy or disagreement between themselves and their employer. It is often caused by a dispute over contractual obligations or an action which the employee deems to be inappropriate and can become a form of a “he said she said” scenario if not dealt with efficiently.

Some of the instances connected to past cases of constructive dismissal that we have handled include an accusation of bullying in the workplace, significant pay cuts without prior warning or agreement, and changing the job role of an employee without agreement.

In Short, For employers, the threat of a constructive dismissal case comes with potential damage to the company’s reputation if allowed to carry through to the tribunal and beyond. As such, handling the case as early on as possible is key, with the best-case scenario being a negotiation and settlement in-house.

How Should Employers Handle A Constructive Dismissal Case?

If an employee believes that their case is serious enough to justify resignation and potentially be deemed a constructive dismissal, then the first port of call is generally an in-house negotiation whereby the employee goes through the grievance policy and procedure that you have in place for cases like these. As part of this, employers may want to bring their employment lawyer or legal representative on board early to ensure that every step taken is within the boundaries of the law and will cause no damage to the business.

If the case can’t be resolved and the employee then resigns before taking the matter to a tribunal, it becomes a case where the employee needs to show evidence of their accusation. This is the stage at which our team of specialist employment lawyers can become your formal representation, ensuring the best and fairest outcome for you, and protecting the reputation and assets of the company.

Constructive dismissal, like most legal cases in the workplace, is never easy to navigate or manage – however, with the right support and our expertise we can help guide your business through to the other side.

For more information on this and other services and issues which we can help you to navigate, get in touch with our lawyers directly.

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