When does an employee abandon their employment – and what happens then?

Employees are sometimes accused of abandoning their employment. The employee may have simply disappeared. Other times, the employee remains in contact but, perhaps because of an (alleged) injury or illness, refuses or fails to attend at work. Where is the line drawn between temporary absence and abandonment and, in any case, how should an employer deal with it?

What is a formal warning?

“If an employer wishes to rely on a series of warnings to justify a dismissal, each of those warnings must be justifiable,” writes the team at Hesketh Henry. “Warnings should be used as a rehabilitative tool, rather than a punitive one.”

Redundancies breach Enterprise Agreement provisions

The Full Court of the Federal Court has reinstated employees retrenched in breach of the redundancy terms of their enterprise agreement, even though the employer had adequately consulted with them. Senior Associate Tarsha Gavin and Lawyer Tom Kavanagh of Allens report.

Employees to ‘double dip’ on entitlements?

“You need to be conscious of this [AMWU v Donau Pty Ltd [2016] FWCFB 3075] decision when terminating the employment of any permanent employee who has had a period of continuous, regular and systematic casual service – especially in redundancy programs,” writes the Minter Ellison team. Read more about its impacts.

Was the dismissal of Mr Goodall unfair?

The FWC has ordered the reinstatement of an employee dismissed for inappropriate and unsafe workplace behaviour, despite the employer having a valid reason for the dismissal and following a fair procedure. Allens’ Law Graduate David Hunt and Partner Simon Dewberry report.