Unfairly Dismissed?

Unfairly Dismissed? Get Help Today – Call in the Labour Law Experts

Have you been unfairly dismissed? Get help today from expert labour law attorneys. Our team of attorneys represent employees, employee organisations such as trade unions, employers and employment organisations. As such, we understand how the employer attorneys will argue, which gives us an advantage in dispute resolution, representation at the CCMA and with court litigation.

If you feel you have been unfairly dismissed, it is essential to get help today. The longer you wait, the less likely your chance for reinstitution and/or the requisite compensation from the employer.

How do you know that it is unfair dismissal?

If the employer dismissed you for reasons other than operational, misconduct on your part or because of lack of performance or capacity to do the job you were hired for, then the dismissal may be unfair. Even if you were dismissed for a valid and fair reason, without the employer following the correct procedures for dismissing you, you still have enough reason to bring in a complaint of unfair dismissal.

As an employee, you have the right not to be arbitrarily discriminated against and the employer should treat you fairly. As such, the employer can usually only dismiss you for a gross infringement of rules and procedures, wilful destruction or damaging of the employer or a client’s property, wilful injury to a colleague or client and for endangering the lives of employees or clients. You can also be dismissed for gross disobedience. However, the employer should not dismiss you for a first time offence and/or without following proper procedures, such as the necessary disciplinary action and the surrounding circumstances of each and every case have to be considered carefully before making this decision, as dismissal is a last resort provided for in the Labour Relations Act Code of Conduct: Misconduct .

The employer may not dismiss you for participating in a legal strike, for pregnancy or any reason related to pregnancy. Note that the employer has the right to expect reasonable job performance and behaviour according to the company regulations. You thus have certain obligations as employee and should also follow the correct procedures for resignation.

If the employer dismisses you for any of the reasons below it will also constitute automatic unfair dismissal:

  • Participating in legal labour union activities.
  • Exercising any of your rights as outlined in the Labour Relations Act.
  • Not being willing to accept changes in your working conditions.
  • Reasons related to discrimination based on your sexual orientation, religion, race or gender.
  • Where you are dismissed because of a disclosure made regarding unlawful activities of the employer.
  • Not being willing to do the work of a person who is on strike.
  • Pregnancy and/or any reason related to pregnancy.


Even if you misconducted yourself, the employer must still follow the correct procedures and give you a fair opportunity to be heard in your defence before considering dismissal. The employer is in any event obliged to pay salary/wages, and any notice as well as any accrued leave pay due to you. You are entitled to a fair hearing before the employer dismisses you. This hearing is where you get a chance to defend yourself against allegations. You can refer the unfair dismissal to the CCMA or take the required legal action.

According the CCMA Codes of Good Practice you are fairly dismissed if you have not adhered to a rule of conduct at your place of employment and if that rule was needed as well as fair. You cannot be dismissed for a rule that you have no knowledge about and if the rule has not been enforced consistently. This means that should the employer dismiss you for not adhering to the rule, but other employees who have disobeyed the rule are not dismissed that you have been unfairly dismissed. The employer cannot just dismiss you for breaking a rule of conduct without proper disciplinary procedures first applied. Repeated breaking of the rule can lead to dismissal provided it is done fairly.

If you have read the above and feel that you have been unfairly dismissed get help today. Contact our team at Allardyce & Partners for legal assistance at reception@www.allardyce.co.za or on 011 234 2125.

*NB this article is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. You are advised to consult with us before using/relying on this information.

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