ACAS Code of Practice

Advice  |   2 December 2021

Written by
Sarah Wilkinson, Associate Solicitor

Employers considering dismissal for poor performance or misconduct are required to have regard to the ACAS Code of Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures which can be found here. The Code also applies to grievances so may also apply to cases where an employee has resigned as a result of a grievance and claims to have been constructively dismissed. Where either party in an Employment Tribunal claim (employer or employee) have unreasonably failed to follow the Code, the Employment Tribunal has jurisdiction to increase (or reduce) the amount of compensation that would otherwise have been payable to the Claimant, by up to 25%. In cases of unfair dismissal, this means 25% of the compensatory award, not the basic award. However, when a Tribunal has made findings of both unfair dismissal and unlawful discrimination, it will have to consider two different sets of remedies. Whilst an employee cannot be compensated twice for the same financial loss, the recent case of Slade and anor v Biggs and ors serves as a useful reminder that the uplift (or reduction) can be applied to both an unfair dismissal award and any award for injury to feelings and aggravated damages commonly found in discrimination claims without amounting to “double-counting”.

Should you require any assistance understanding your obligations under the ACAS Code of Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures, or calculating remedies available in Employment Tribunal litigation, do get in touch with our Employment Team on 0208 290 0440.

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