Ben Gibson v Euromed Ireland Logistics Ltd and NVD Ltd [Employment Appeals Tribunal]




Claimant: Ms Carol A Hickey, Hickey Dorney, Solicitors, The Square, Passage West, Co Cork

Respondents: The Society Of The Irish Motor Industry, 5 Upper Pembroke Street, Dublin 2


Employment law - Unfair dismissal - Transfer of Undertakings - Accident in workplace - Damage of vehicle - Whether employee unfairly dismissed - Council Directive 77/187/EEC - Unfair Dismissals Acts, 1977 to 2007.


The Claimant gave evidence on his own behalf and he told the Tribunal that he commenced employment with the Second Named Respondent in November 2006. The nature of the work was that he moved motorcars in a compound where cars were being shipped to and transported from. On the 30th of October 2009 he was laid off because there was insufficient work for him. During the course of his employment with the Second Named Respondent he had always been under the supervision of Mr. Cunningham to whom he had always reported to.


In December 2009 Mr. Cunningham advised him that the First Named Respondent were taking over the contract from the Second Named Respondent but that there would be work for him doing the exact same job under Mr. Cunningham�€�s supervision, but that if he took the job he would be employed by the First Named Respondent. He said that what little work there was in the yard was now transferred to the First Named Respondent.


On the 19th of December 2009 when moving a car, he skidded on ice and caused damage to the vehicle. This was not an unusual occurrence in the yard where vehicles were constantly being moved. He offered to pay for the damage to the vehicle and was ultimately furnished with a bill in the sum of €1959.79.


He did not realise that the damage was this extensive and he was not in a position to pay this sum as it represented several weeks earnings.


The Claimant advised the Second Named Respondent that he would not be able to pay the bill and on the 20th of January 2010 he was dismissed from his employment.


Mr. Cunningham gave evidence that he knew the Claimant and got on well with him. He said it was not unusual for cars to be damaged from time to time in the yard while being moved around. He said that he did not consider causing damage to the vehicle in the course of employment a dismissal offence where it happened only once. He personally had nothing...

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