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Dismissal and company car

(10 Posts)
Lubyloo Fri 11-Jul-08 23:12:11

Wondering if anyone can help out my sister. She works for a small company and has three people that report in to her. She has been unhappy about the performance of one of the employees who has been there for seven months. Her manager has now told her to dismiss the employee on Monday, take the keys of his company car off him and send him home in a taxi. They will pay him a months wages in lieu of notice.

Poor sister has never had to fire anyone before and is anxious about doing so. Can they really take the company car off him or is he entitled to keep it for a month? Her boss says that as they will terminate his contract on Monday then there is no requirement for him to keep the car. Is this true? Sis wants to make sure that everything is done by the book and is going to worry all weekend!

edam Fri 11-Jul-08 23:14:53

Have you had a look on the ACAS website? Might be able to find something relevant there.

beaniesteve Fri 11-Jul-08 23:16:55

Has the employee had any warnings? I think before she fires him she should be really clear about how his performance has been managed. If he has not been made aware of his need to improve then it may be unfair to sack him.

Not sure about the complany car. I would imagine that as it comes with his job, once he is dismissed then he would lose that company perk immediately?

llareggub Fri 11-Jul-08 23:20:37

Tell sis to seek advice from a qualified and experienced consultant. The company car is the least of her worries.

beaniesteve Fri 11-Jul-08 23:20:38

beanie's sister here.

Firstly, if he's only been there 7 months, I believe that you can only claim unfair dismissal after 1 year.

Secondly if your sister is not an experienced manager, she should check with teh HR department, if there is one, and she should ask her boss for support ie: being there with her.

Really, they should give the person fair reason for his dismissal, which should be documented, and which should be in writing.
Yes, if they are dismissing him, then they should take back anything he holds belonging to the company.

Im not a specialist, so please don't take this as gospel.

If it were me I'd be checking the ACAS website about dismissal periods and also his contract and what that says about dismissal.
Was he on a probation period, and was his employment confirmed after a probation period?

llareggub Fri 11-Jul-08 23:25:33

Oh, just saw that bit about 7 months service. thought he had been performing badly for 7 months.

Her first port of call needs to statutory dismissal procedures. Keep the boss out of it so the dismissed employee has someone to appeal to.

She really needs to read the ACAS pages.

Lubyloo Fri 11-Jul-08 23:35:13

Thank you. Will get her to look at ACAS. I have been trying to find info on the net but no definitive answer. She wasn't concerned about unfair dismissal because he has only been employed for 7 months and because she has discussed his performance with him several times (although I don't think she has specifically warned him that underperformance would result in dismissal)

Unfortunately they don't have an HR dept as it's only a small company. She feels terrible because he has a young baby but the business is being affected by the economic situation at the moment and they can't afford to carry anyone. She asked me for advice as I used to be a manager for a large company however we had an entire HR dept at our disposal to ensure that everything was done correctly.

Lubyloo Fri 11-Jul-08 23:37:34

Beanie's sister - I assume that he would have had a 3 month probation as that is what my sister had when she started there.

beaniesteve Fri 11-Jul-08 23:38:06

llareddub - yes, good point (Beanie's sis here againj)

Need to clarify whether he's been in the job for seven months or whether it's bad performance for seven months.

Also yes, they'd need someone to appeal to.

Thinking on this, there should be written procedures that deal with misconduct, capability or gross misconduct. If employee been there for over a year, and has not had any disciplinary warnings and support, then it would be unfair dismissal and could cost the company a lot of money and hassle if the employee appeals/sues.

Any poor performance should be picked up in regular supervisory sessions, and noted in writing, and monitored over a period of time, with clear performance indicators and notes as to whether they have improved or not.

I think there is a statutory requirement for the verbal/written warning and dismissal process now.

flowerybeanbag Sat 12-Jul-08 10:07:00

You've had some good advice, can't add to it as your sister would be someone I want as a client. But there is a legal requirement to have various written procedures available to employees including discipline.

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