Blog » THE CASE OF WAIT UNTIL ITS LATE LTD. V. FRANK FINK
THE CASE OF WAIT UNTIL ITS LATE LTD. V. FRANK FINK
27 March 2017
Learn from others' mistake by reading the summary of a very fresh decision of the Supreme Court about an ordinary dismissal.
Wait Until Its Late Ltd. terminated the employment of its financial planning and analytical leader, Frank Fink. The reason of the termination was the loss of trust: Wait Until Its Late Ltd. conducted an examination and found out that Frank Fink unauthorizedly ordered overtime work and approved certain payments to his supervisor. Because of these infringements, Wait Until Its Late Ltd. lost his trust in Frank.
Although the examination was closed in May, Wait Until Its Late Ltd. could only fire Frank in October since his position was very important and Wait Until Its Late Ltd. had to find the new colleague for the job.
Frank Fink sued Wait Until Its Late Ltd. claiming that the justification of the termination is not valid and cannot be the reason of the termination. On the one hand, he disputed that he committed the said infringements. On the other hand, he claimed that the alleged loss of the trust happened in May while Wait Until Its Late Ltd. only fired him ca. 5 months later which cannot be a timely justification.
The first & second instance court dismissed Frank’s claim and accepted Wait Until Its Late Ltd’s argumentation that although he lost the trust in Frank earlier, he needed to find the new colleague for the position and only after this he could fire Frank.
By contrast, the Supreme Court found the termination wrongful. The loss of trust happened in May when the examination was closed. The fact that Wait Until Its Late Ltd. continued to employ Frank for 5 months after the examination, undermines his argumentation that the reason of termination is the loss of trust. In case of loss of trust, the employer cannot wait for months with the termination. The important role of the employee and the fact that the position needed to be filled cannot be an excuse for the delay of Wait Until Its Late Ltd.
If you find a valid reason to fire your employee, do not delay with the termination. The reason which is a valid one at the time it occurs, cannot necessarily be applied at a later date.
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