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Can you dismiss an entire group of employees for misconduct? Find out what the courts say

by , 13 September 2015
So, you believe a group of your employees are guilty of misconduct. But, unfortunately, you can't identify all of them or prove who's guilty of the alleged misconduct.

What now?

Based on the cases Chauke & Others v Lee Service Centre CC t/a Leeson Motors (1998) 19 ILJ 1441 (LAC) and RSA Geological Services (a division of De Beers Consolidated Mines Ltd) vs Grogan & Others (2008) 2 BLLR 184 (LC), you can learn the following:

1. Your employees have an obligation to assist you in identifying anyone guilty of misconduct in the workplace. If they don't do this, they breach the trust relationship between you and them.

Fact: The CCMA doesn't care why you dismissed an employee... It only wants to know if you dismissed him fairly
2. You can charge and dismiss an employee for the alleged misconduct, even if you can't identify those who are guilt,y or if your employees refuse to assist you in doing so.
But, to justify such a dismissal, you must prove on a balance of probabilities that: 

Employees in the workplace committed the misconduct;
You can't identify those who are guilty;
You employees either participated in or knew about the misconduct. Use direct evidence or inferences as well as circumstantial evidence to try and prove it; and
In spite of having the opportunity to do so, your employees refused or failed to assist you in identifying the culprits.

So, there is some very useful information to know when dealing with a group of employees who you suspect of committing misconduct.

To learn more, click below….

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