Frequently Asked Employment Questions

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Document updated/added on 04.06.2019

Topic: Discipline and grievances

What can we do if an employee fails to turn up to a disciplinary hearing?

If it's the first time, give them the benefit of the doubt and re-schedule the hearing. Immediately write to them with the new date and also inform them that unless there's a very good reason, they're expected to attend. However, if they're already absent from work and their absence is long term, such as stress-related sickness absence, this could be tricky as it's possible the employee will argue that they're mentally incapable of going through a disciplinary hearing. So even if you think that this is a try-on, do be prepared to allow for up to two postponements. Once you have a return to work date, schedule the new hearing for the week that they are due to return. In the event that they show no sign of returning to work at that stage, force the issue. Write to them offering some alternatives, such as: (1) holding the hearing at their home; (2) holding it at a neutral venue; or (3) allowing them to submit a written statement in response to the allegations. Tip. If there's no response whatsoever from the employee, consider holding the re-scheduled hearing in their absence so that you can resolve the situation before witnesses forget what happened.