Call us now 01473 688100

Keep the employee aware of disciplinary issues

Posted on 1st October 2010
Case law

An employee was wrongfully dismissed where the employer had not kept him 'fully informed of any perceived deficiencies in his conduct'.

On this page

Meet the author

Julie Temple Julie
Partner Telephone: 01473 694407

the club had not kept him 'fully informed of any perceived deficiencies in his conduct'

McCormack v Hamilton Academical Football Club Limited [2010]


Mr McCormack was Assistant Manager of Hamilton Academical Football Club Limited. He was dismissed for gross misconduct after just over two months. The club relied on conduct involving bullying, swearing at the youth team and making sexually derogatory comments to a female trainee physiotherapist which it said undermined the mutual trust and confidence to such an extent that the club was entitled to dismiss. Mr McCormack was spoken to on at least two occasions about his behaviour but he was not subject to formal disciplinary proceedings, given instructions about conducting training sessions or told about the allegations of bullying.

The decision

The court held that Mr McCormack had not breached the duty of mutual trust and confidence by his actions and the club had not kept him 'fully informed of any perceived deficiencies in his conduct'.


The court commented that the case was not one where Mr McCormack was alleged not to have complied with instructions given to him. As such this case is a clear warning that employers must keep employees informed of any conduct issues, set expectations and give instruction if they are to be in strong position to dismiss successfully.

Clear, concise and accurate information for employers and HR professionals

Visit the hrlegal archive

Find out how we can help you

Click here to contact us or phone us 01473 688100

Keep your legal costs down with

Professional telephone and email advice and guidance for solving your everyday employment law and HR issues

No waffle, well written employment law updates and HR news articles, including case reports, helping employers and people managers keep up to date with what's important

Our outstanding employment tribunal litigation service for employers designed to secure the best possible outcome for a value for money cost

Tailored, knowledgeable and cost effective 'How To' training in HR best practice and employment law for people managers

Related articles