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The Statutory Dismissal Procedures will be abolished from 6 April 2009. The penalty of automatic unfair dismissal for not following the Statutory Dismissal Procedure will also go, although a dismissal may still be unfair if there has not been a reasonable dismissal procedure.
There will be a monetary penalty for failure to follow the good employment practice set out in the new ACAS Code of Practice on Discipline and Grievance Procedures. Employment Tribunals will be able to award up to 25% more compensation if an employer does not follow the ACAS Code. An Employee who successfully claims unfair dismissal but had not complied with his or her employer’s procedure (say, by not turning up to disciplinary hearings) can have compensation reduced by up to 25% too.
There will be some occasions when the Statutory Dismissal Procedures will continue to apply after 5 April 2009 – in essence when the dismissal procedure began before 6 April 2009.
Statutory Grievance Procedures
The Statutory Grievance Procedures will also be abolished from 6 April 2009; they are also subject to similar transitional provisions.
To download ACAS Code, go to www.acas.org.uk
There is also an ACAS Guide to the Code of Practice at http://www.acas.org.uk/?articleid=2174
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