Giblin v Borderland Imports Ltd

JurisdictionIreland
CourtEmployment Appeal Tribunal (Ireland)
Judgment Date25 May 2004
Judgment citation (vLex)[2004] 5 JIEC 2502

Employment Appeals Tribunal

EAT: Giblin v Borderland Imports Limited

Representation:

Claimant:

Mr. Pat McMyler, P. A Dorrian & Co., Solicitors,

Main Street, Buncrana, Co. Donegal

Respondent:

Ms. Roisin M. Doherty, Roisin M. Doherty Solicitor,

Gorse Park, Bailyloskey, Carndonagh. Co. Donegal

Abstract:

EAT - Employment - Unfair dismissal - Minimum Notice and Terms of Employment Acts, 1973 to 2001 - Unfair Dismissals Acts, 1977 to 2001 - Whether the respondent investigated the complaints alleged against the claimant - Whether the claimant was unfairly dismissed.

EMPLOYMENT APPEALS TRIBUNAL

CASE NO.

UD857/2003

MN2050/2003

CLAIM OF:

Ciaran Giblin, 1 Cloncool Park, Buncrana, Co. Donegal

against

Borderland Imports Limited, Main Sweet, Muff,

Co. Donegal

under

MINIMUM NOTICE AND TERMS OF EMPLOYMENT ACTS, 1973 TO 2001

UNFAIR DISMISSALS ACTS, 1977 TO 2001

I certify that the Tribunal

(Division of Tribunal)

Chairman:

Mr. P. O'Leary B L

Members:

Mr. D. Morrison

Mr. M. Mc Garry

heard this claim at Buncrana on 18th November 2003 and 20th January 2004

Facts The claimant was employed by the respondent as a shop assistant on 17 April 2000 however, he was promoted to duty manager in 2001 and at the time of the incident on 4 January 2003, which led to these proceedings he was the full time manager of the shop. The claimant stated that on 4 January 2003 he was in sole control of the shop as both owners of the respondent were overseas. The claimant gave evidence that new uniform T-shirts, which were not ordered by him arrived in the shop on 3 January 2003. The following day he asked the female employees to change into those T-shirts in a storeroom rather than the changing rooms, as he wanted to avoid confusion between the staff and customers. Later that day two female employees accused the claimant of watching them whilst they were changing into the T-shirts and they also telephoned owner A and informed him of the accusations. Subsequently, the claimed phoned the assistant manageress and requested her to attend the shop. When she arrived she requested the claimant to hand over his keys to the safe so that she could obtain her sister's wages. The Gardai were called to the shop and they requested the claimant to wait outside. The claimant was then advised by the owner's brother-in-law to remain away from the shop until the owner returned. The claimant met with owner A on 9 January 2003 and was informed that his handing over of the keys to the assistant manageress was taken as his resignation . The claimant denied that he had resigned and he was not requested to return to work. The owner of the respondent gave evidence that he had not dismissed the claimant.

Held by the Tribunal:

1. That the employer failed to conduct any or any proper investigation into the matter. Had the employer done so he would have come to the conclusion that there was no evidence that the claimant had placed a camera in the storeroom as alleged. No one had attempted to inspect the place where the purported camera was said to have been placed. Accordingly, the claimant was unfairly dismissed by the respondent.

2. That compensation was the most appropriate remedy and in the circumstances the claimant was entitled to an award in the sum of €10,000.00 under the terms of the Unfair Dismissals Acts, 1977 to 2001. He was also entitled to an award in the sum of €400.00 being one weeks pay under the Minimum Notice and Terms of Employment Acts, 1973 to 2001 as compensation for failure to receive his due notice.

The determination of the Tribunal was as follows: -
1

At the outset of this hearing an application was made byte representative of the claimant for the evidence to be heard in camera, after some discussion this application was granted by the Tribunal.

Claimant's Case
2

The claimant named the two brothers who are the owners of the respondent company. The claimant told the Tribunal he was first employed by the respondent as a shop assistant on 17 April 2000 and that after some six months he took on extra responsibility when the shop manager left to get married. The claimant went on to state that he was promoted to duty manager in 2001 at which time his pay was increased. At the time of the incident on 4 January2003, which led to this hearing the claimant was full time manager of the shop and took his instructions from the owners of the respondent. The claimant told the Tribunal that on 4...

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