Have You Been Unfairly Dismissed By Your Employer?

30 OCT 2019


Has your employer sacked you recently for reasons you believe are wrong or unfair?

Don’t sweep the matter under the rug. There is a chance you may have unfair dismissal rights.

Be warned … you generally only have a short time to act after a dismissal. Strict and short time limits generally apply.

What is an unfair dismissal?

If your employer has terminated your employment, or forced you to resign due to their actions, you have been ‘dismissed’ from employment.

The dismissal may be treated as ‘unfair’ if you can prove that:

  1. you were dismissed; and

  2. that dismissal was harsh, unjust or unreasonable.

 If you think you have been unfairly dismissed, you may have the ability to make an unfair dismissal application subject to other criteria.

What happens when you act too late?

Time is of the essence when it comes to making an unfair dismissal application.

If you act too late, and do not meet time limits that apply to file a claim in a court or tribunal, your claim may be denied.

The recent Fair Work Commission case of Gail Miller v DPV Health Ltd (Hume) [2019]is an example of an aggrieved individual being denied the right to commence an unfair dismissal claim in the Fair Work Commission.

Background facts

Ms Gail Miller was dismissed from her employment on 23 January 2019, because her employer alleged that she extracted the wrong tooth from a patient and allegedly covered up the mistake by altering the patient’s medical records. Ms Miller believed she was unfairly dismissed based on several reasons.

On 14 February 2019, Ms Miller filed an unfair dismissal application in the Fair Work Commission against her then ex-employer, DPV Health Ltd. Pursuant to the legislation that applied to Ms Miller’s employment, Ms Miller needed to file an application by close of business on 13 February 2019.

Her slight delay of 1 business day meant that she needed to seek an extension from the Fair Work Commission for the case to officially commence.

In Ms Miller’s case, her request for an extension to file the application 1 business day out of time was denied.

What should you do if you think you have been unfairly dismissed?

If you want to try and get your job back and/or seek compensation for your lost wages, you should act as soon as possible (subject to the time limits that apply).

Of course every situation is different. Hence specific legal advice should be sought to assess what time limit applies in your situation.

At Marsdens Law Group, our initial consultation is free of charge. If you believe that you have been unfairly dismissed from your employment, or you are unsure of your employment rights, please contact Grant Butterfield or Simon Kumar (contact details below) to have a short discussion with comps to see how and if we can help.

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