Why employers should have an Appeal as an option in the event of a Dismissal
In the event of an employment tribunal claim, the tribunal is looking for fairness and reasonableness during the process. We recommend that an Appeal is always offered as this enables the employee to challenge something they may see as unfair or challenge a procedural issue.
Dismissal for redundancy is technically free from the constraints of the ACAS Code of Practice for Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures but as there is a clear process for redundancy, Guildford HR strongly recommends that there is an Appeal procedure as this gives the employee an opportunity to raise a challenge. We advise employees if they want to make an appeal that they put this in writing explaining why they are appealing for example they feel the process has been unfair. Small employers are sometimes concerned that there is not always a different manager to hear an Appeal in a redundancy matter, Guildford HR has been able to step in and manage this stage of the process.
In Moore V Phoenix Product Development the Employment Tribunal found an appeal would not have changed the decision, but as Daniel Barnett in The HR Inner Circle November 2021 edition, notes this is extremely rare. This case was a dismissal for “some other substantial reason”, the simple process did not need an appeal to make it fair, “the key feature was the pointlessness of an appeal… but the employee had sealed his own fate by his unacceptable behaviour and leading role in the breakdown of relationships”.
If your business is considering any form of dismissal Guildford HR recommends you follow ACAS guidelines: https://www.acas.org.uk/ to be sure the process fair and reasonable.