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How to deal with an employee who has committed or been charged with committing an offence

Author: Lynda Macdonald


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  • Deal with an employee who has committed an offence at work by applying the disciplinary procedure in the normal way.
  • Recognise that the fairness of a dismissal will depend not only on the reason for dismissal but also on whether or not a fair procedure has been followed.
  • Ensure, before taking a decision to dismiss an employee who is suspected of an offence, that there is a genuine belief based on reasonable grounds that the employee committed the offence and that there has been a thorough investigation into the matter.
  • Consider whether or not there is a genuine connection between an employee's offence committed outside of work and their employment before deciding what action, if any, to take against the employee.
  • Review whether or not it is reasonable to impose a sanction other than dismissal or to offer the employee a transfer to alternative work, rather than proceeding automatically to dismiss an employee who has committed an offence outside of work.