$880,000 paid for unlawful unfair dismissal.

A 60-year-old engineering and operations manager was unlawfully dismissed because his employer was ‘fed up with him’ and he was also accused of being a malingerer.

The court heard that the:

  • employee had asked for a pay rise, to be a member of the board and requested adjusted working hours to attend hospital meetings – after being involved in a car accident that left him with injuries.
  • the employer had made promises, including a promotion in employee’s role and a pay raise, and it wasn’t until the employee felt these promises weren’t kept that he went to his employer and formally requested them.

Federal court Judge Greg Egan said he thought the dismissal was calculated, stating that the contraventions were deliberately made by senior management who had “become increasingly frustrated by the employee’s pleaded complaints and inquiries, and had decided to be rid of him for that proscribed reason.”

In a final ruling the court ordered the organisation to pay:

  • $275,940 for failing to pay unused annual leave
  • $589,439 (plus $13,925 in interest) for compensation based of a calculation the employee would have worked at the company for another 3 years.

ProcessWorx deals with dismissal cases regularly. If you are considering terminating an employee you need to ensure it’s for legitimate reasons, and the appropriate evidence is available to back up your reasoning.


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Marisa Ross

HR Advisor

Marisa is an experienced and motivated HR professional with a strong HR generalist and business operations background with a focus on employee relations, performance management, leadership training & development, workers compensation & injury management, and employee retention. Marisa holds a Bachelor of Human Resource Management and a Bachelor of Behavioural Science with a minor in Counselling. Having worked in a variety of industries from SMEs to large blue-chip organisations, Marisa is passionate about enriching employee experience, employee retention, and building leadership capability in people management.

Aimee Grigson

Aimee Grigson

WHS Advisor

Aimee has a strong understanding of Workplace Health and Safety Legislation and standards and has extensive HSEQ experience in a number of industries. Aimee has a great ability to engage across all levels of organisation, including field teams, leadership and external stakeholders. Aimee ensures Health and Safety Management Systems are compliant to legislation, effectively implemented and understood by all. Aimee has a Certificate IV in Work Health and Safety and qualifications in auditing and incident investigations. Aimee is passionate about coaching and developing small businesses towards a positive safety culture.