HR Policies and Procedures
Understanding your employer’s polices and procedures is key to successful and productive employment relationships and it empowers the employee to know their rights and obligations.
Termination of Employment
The termination of the employment relationship can be a turbulent time. If your employment has been terminated by your employer, your employer must be in a position to show fair grounds for so doing and that fair procedures have been applied. If the termination is as a result of your employer re-structuring or rationalising, your employer is obliged to follow certain procedures. In the absence of proper grounds and/ or procedures, you may be entitled to bring a claim to the Workplace Relations Commission under the Unfair Dismissals Acts.
Employees can often find themselves taken aback when a former employer seeks to restrain or object to their activities after that employment has come to an end and they either moving on to alternative employment or setting up on their own business. As an employee, you not may have seriously considered any restrictive clauses in your contract of employment at the commencement of same, and it is only when post termination issues arise, that you must have regard to the enforceability or otherwise of such clauses. In general, the courts will have regard to the competing rights of the employer to protect its legitimate business interest, and your right to earn a livelihood.
If your employer makes circumstances of your employment so difficult that it effectively makes your continued employment untenable, you should follow the grievance procedure. Where that does not resolve matters and you are forced to resign, you may bring a case to the Workplace Relations Commission for Constructive Dismissal.
Transfer of Undertakings Regulations (TUPE)
When an employer takes over or merges with another business, under certain circumstances, your rights as an employee must be preserved and protected.
An employer can take issue with an employee’s capacity and ability to perform their role at any stage in the course of the employee relationship. This inevitably causes considerable stress and a strain relationships with the employer. Where the burden being placed on the employer is onerous or unreasonable, unfair targets or deadlines are imposed or adequate support isn’t provided, an employee may wish to communicate this to their employer and will usually wish to preserve the employment relationship. A number of potential legal issues can arise.
At Orpen Franks we advise employees on the best approaches to take to mitigate against damaging the employment relationship and the legal options available to them in the course of a period of their performance management or if their employment is ultimately terminated.
It is often only when the employment relationship comes to an end that an employee will find themselves in potential difficulty in taking up a position with a competitor or setting up on their own, due to objections raised by the former employer based on terms contained in the original contract of employment.
It is always prudent to take advice on any purported post -termination restrictions at the commencement of employment when an opportunity may exist to either negotiate terms or decline a position.
At Orpen Franks we review and advice on employment contracts at the beginning of the employment relationship and ultimately, at the termination, if and when difficulties arise in moving forward with the employee’s career.
Breaches of Data Protection (GDPR)
Where your employer improperly disseminates or uses your data or information relating to you, outside of the permitted scope of use, you may be entitled to compensation. The Irish Courts have since 2023 demonstrated a willingness to compensate employees for breaches of GDPR where the breach causes losses or injury beyond mere upset.
General Employment Law Advice
Advising on Irish employment legislation including the law relating to the organisation of working time, equal pay, health and safety, payment of wages, minimum notice requirements and keeping abreast of continually evolving legislation in the area of employment law.