Invited To A Disciplinary Meeting - For The Wrong Thing!

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buffymad | 15:15 Sat 07th Jun 2014 | Law
12 Answers
My boyfriend was off work sick last week. He rang in every day. On the Monday of the next week he received a call to say he had to attend a training session at the head office which he did.

On his return to work the next day, his immediate boss told him he'd probably be getting a letter inviting him to a meeting about his sickness (his record isn't the best!). All fair enough.

He's now received 2 letters, 1 saying he didn't follow procedures by not phoning in to report his absence on the Monday. The second was inviting him to a disciplinary meeting where the "offence" was not reporting his absence and not following procedures about this. Obviously someone not passing the info on about him being on a training course!

He'll be speaking to his immediate boss of course on Monday but I just wondered what was what. Could they still hold the meeting but about his sickness absence - even though that's not the offence described in the letter? If they want to see him about his sickness should they issue a new letter? Should they apologise in some way as they're accusing him of something when he hadn't actually done anything wrong?

To make it all worse the letter said he could get a warning for this. Which makes it even worse considering he wasn't even off sick!!!!


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When did he inform his employer of his return to work date?
When was he informed of the training day?
Who ran the training course, in house or outside?
Question Author
He was phoned by his boss' boss on the Monday to say he had to attend this training course. So he was aware that he was returning to work. The course was arranged by the company, not sure if it was an internal or external person who conducted it - but there were another couple of people there plus the bloke who rang boyfriend in the first place.

When he got back to "normal" work on the Tuesday he completed his self certification form which showed when he was off and back to work etc.
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Question Author
I agree but what I'm asking is can they still pull him into a disciplinary meeting for attendance even though the letter states it's for something else? As otherwise aren't they not actually following their own procedures?
The meeting should be about what they've said in the letter, i.e. alledgedly failing to report his absence. Do you have reason to believe they'll use it to talk about something else?
Question Author
Just the fact that he's had a few absences and that's what his boss said he'd get a letter about, inviting him to a meeting! But as I say, the letter specifically mentions something else.
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Just go to the meeting and let the company follow what they perceive is their process, which has to be both fair and reasonable. Those two terms are what a tribunal considers if push comes to shove. Just bear in mind that many attempts to dismiss are adjudged unfair, not because the reason for dismissal was inappropriately used, but because the process used was flawed.
Agree with others, the organisation appears not to be able to track the sequence of these events. The meeting should resolve that, and all will be normal again.
Of course, any employee of lower than acceptable attendance record is liable to have their employer start a disciplinary process. But it has to be done fairly
My answer written in parallel to divbuddy. But we are saying the same thing
agree BM

He turns up and answers the questions put to him.
he should take along a union rep if the process allows it or a work mate

any other subject, he should say - I am sorry I havent prepared answers or data on that one, can we re book ?

I have been both ambushed, and also subjected to an inquiry along the lines of: 'you've been a naughty boy, tell us about it...' I didnt like it mmuch and you need a helper with you, to forestall further trouble.

what happened ?
Question Author
He went to work and went to see his boss about it. Straight away his boss said they'd realised their error so the meeting had been cancelled. A little bit later someone from HR phoned him to apologise (shock horror!) and told him just to try and not be off sick anymore - no meeting required. So a lot of bluster about nothing! Thanks for all your replies.

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