Know your rights about a work dismissal and the grounds for a dismissal

Blog8 - Know your rights about a work dismissal and the grounds for a dismissal

Being dismissed from your job

A dismissal is when your employer terminates your employment.  A truth about dismissals is that in a lot of cases your employer does not even have to give you notice.

When an employer dismisses you, they may only do so if:

  • That you are being treated fairly and equally whether you are a part-time or full-time employee
  • They have a valid and justifiable reason for the dismissal
  • They have acted reasonably and rationally
  • They cannot dismiss you for something that they allow other employees to do, their dismissal must be consistent
  • There has been a full investigation into the reason for the dismissal

work - Know your rights about a work dismissal and the grounds for a dismissal

The required notice period for a dismissal

  • The employer is contractually obligated to give at least the notice period as stated in your contract of employment.
  • They may be eligible to give the statutory minimum notice period in some circumstances
  • There are circumstances where an employee can be dismissed immediately, and these are usually to do with acts that violate work policies and ethics. Such as violence, etc.

Some reasons as to why a person can be dismissed

  • Substantive fairness dismissal
    This is when a person is dismissed because they have refused to accept any terms, conditions of their employment due to a company restructure or reorganization.
    Or if you are arrested and or put in prison.
  • The statutory restriction dismissal
    This is when the company dismisses a person because continuing to employ them in the capacity in which they are employed is illegal/the company is breaking the law keeping them employed.
  • A summary dismissal
    This is a dismissal of a gross misconduct such as acts of violence, threats and willful destruction of company property. The employer usually does not have to go through any of the normal disciplinary procedures should they feel a person has acted on these grounds.
  • Redundancy
    In most cases, a redundancy is done fairly and the employee is offered a form of a severance package.


Always ensure that you have valid and signed employment contracts.  Keep them filed away and updated regularly.  Seek advice immediately should you think you have been dismissed unfairly.  Your employer may also have grounds for dismissal if they feel a person is not performing in the positions properly.
Always get your dismissal in writing as you have a right to ask your employer for a statement with the reasons for your dismissal.
To check your dismissal rights you can do so on the Fair Work Ombudsman site.  The site contains a lot of useful information and contacts.

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