1 min read

Can we dismiss an employee who has been convicted of a criminal offence?

Q: One of our employees has recently been convicted of a serious criminal offence. He will be sentenced shortly.

What are our grounds in regard to terminating his employment?

A: If the employee has genuinely been convicted of a serious criminal offence it may provide grounds for summary dismissal due to serious or gross misconduct. If the employee cannot attend work because they are incarcerated then they will be unable to perform the inherent requirements of the role, which also gives you grounds for dismissal.

However, this area of law can be extremely complex and if you dismiss the employee incorrectly they may have grounds to make claims under unfair dismissal laws, antidiscrimination laws, for a breach of the general protections provisions in the Fair Work Act and for notice pay.

Please note: The answer is correct at the time of publishing. Be aware that laws may change over time. Refer to Dismissal for current advice.

The Workplace Bulletin

Get the latest employment law news, legal updates, case law and practical advice from our experts sent straight to your inbox every week.

Sending confirmation email...
Great! Now check your inbox and click the link to confirm your subscription.
Please enter a valid email address!