LLA 120 A guide for employees in a disciplinary hearing
This article is aimed at providing advice and practical assistance to an employee who has been instructed to attend a disciplinary hearing.
Many employees are not unionised. Even those who are unionised are often given shoddy, uncaring and incorrect advice. Many lower to middle level managers and supervisors, and professionals in all sectors are left without anyone to turn to when they have been charged with misconduct. Employers who you think would know better often treat employees like you with scant regard to their rights, and with no concern for the trauma someone goes through when being subjected to a disciplinary hearing.
This article has been written for you.
You need to understand what a disciplinary hearing is. It is a dispute resolution process aimed at finding out facts: it is a fact finding process. It is not a court of law. Nor is it an arbitration. The Code of Good Practice: Dismissal refers to the process as an investigation, because that is what it is- or should be. In this investigation the chairperson has to determine, or find out, two general things: has the employee committed the misconduct and if so, what sanction should apply. Keep this context in mind in what follows.
- Reasons for dismissal
- What is misconduct?
- Employer’s power
- A fair dismissal
- The forum and context of this discussion
- Dismissal without any procedures being followed
- Procedural rights of an employee before a hearing
- Right to be informed of the allegations against you
- A reasonable time to prepare for the hearing
- The right to be assisted by a representative
- The steps of a disciplinary hearing
- A right to make a statement in the hearing
- Defending the allegations /charge
- Defences against the substantive aspects of the hearing
- The right to be informed of the finding
- Other questions- Q and A