While many workplaces continue to be affected by the coronavirus pandemic, employment law and the Acas Code of Practice concerning disciplinary and grievance procedures still apply. If you are facing disciplinary action or grievance procedures, you must be aware of your rights and how these might be affected by coronavirus restrictions.
If you are currently on furlough, it is still possible to be involved in disciplinary or grievance procedures. Whilst on furlough, you may:
Under the Acas Code of Practice on disciplinary and grievance procedures, disciplinary and grievance procedures must always be fair and reasonable. However, while the coronavirus pandemic continues, they must also be in line with public health guidelines, including social distancing and avoiding workplaces where possible. As a result, there may be practical challenges to holding disciplinary or grievance procedures, but they must continue without undue delay. Your employer must attempt to proceed in a safe, fair and reasonable manner. If this is not possible, they must consider whether it would be fair to suspend proceedings until a later date.
In deciding whether proceedings should be suspended, your employer should consider the case's individual circumstances. For example, the matter may be urgent, where it deals with gross misconduct or unlawful harassment. However, minor disciplinary issues may be dealt with at a later date where appropriate.
If your case may result in an employment tribunal, your employer must be mindful of the time limit for bringing a claim.
Can a disciplinary or grievance procedure be carried out remotely?
Yes. Video meetings can form part of any investigation into disciplinary or grievance matters. Your employer may conduct a video meeting, interview or hearing so long as the process is fair and reasonable. Your employer must consider whether:
Will a video hearing be recorded?
Employers must keep a record of any disciplinary or grievance procedures carried out, and such procedures conducted via video may be recorded. However, everyone involved must agree to the meeting being recorded.
If you need employment advice contact Irina Polyakova on 01484 821 300 or at email@example.com