Unfair dismissal occurs when your employer terminates your employment contract without a valid reason or fails to follow the proper procedures. To classify a dismissal as unfair, it must fall into one of the following categories:
1. No Fair Reason: Your employer must have a potentially fair reason for your dismissal, such as conduct, capability, redundancy, some other substantial reason or a statutory restriction. Dismissing you without a legitimate reason can be considered unfair.
2. Procedural Errors: Even with valid grounds for dismissal, your employer must follow the correct procedures. Failure to do so, such as not conducting a proper investigation or providing an opportunity for you to appeal, can render the dismissal unfair
3. Automatically unfair dismissals: For example, where you are pregnant or on maternity leave; you’ve asked for your legal rights at work, you’ve taken action about a health and safety issue, you are a trade union member and took part in trade union activities, whistleblowing
4. Whistleblowing: If you are dismissed for making a qualifying disclosure such as reporting illegal activities or wrongdoing within your workplace, it is considered automatically unfair.