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Six warnings you must keep in mind BEFORE dealing with desertion

by , 08 September 2015
Desertion is when an employee is absent from work or he fails to return to work after an authorised period.

He doesn't call or leave a message explaining his absence, or even if he's going to be returning to work.

This could potentially cause major headaches for you as an employer trying to ensure your business is running as smoothly as possible - with your employees attending work and communicating with you if they can't.

But should desertion arise as a possibility in your company, you need to keep these six warnings in mind BEFORE dealing with it:

1. Courts will only accept absence without permission as genuine desertion if you accept the employee's decision to terminate the contract. But if he comes back, you should give him a chance to explain his absence before dismissal.

2. An employee can't dismiss himself. Only you can, when accepting that the employee has deserted you and that you've decided to dismiss him for doing so.

3. Even if an employee has deserted you and breached the contract, you MUST still give him a chance to state his case and give his story before dismissing him. 

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4. You can't force a deserting employee to return to work.

5. Even if an employee has deserted you, you need to still make a genuine effort to get in contact with him.

6. If an employee has deserted you, you must send a letter to his physical address (that you have on record) stating  he must return to work or face dismissal.

There are six warnings to keep in mind BEFORE dealing with desertion. 

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