How to legally sack staff
- Have policies and procedures – and follow them.
- Be very clear about the reason they are being terminated: performance, misconduct or redundancy.
- Document everything.
- Think about having a third party present when you carry out the termination.
- Give employees the legally required notice period (a sliding scale of between one and five weeks, depending on length of service and the employee’s age).
- Check their other entitlements such as long service leave, annual leave and any contractual requirements.
- Assume the WorkChoice laws give small employers carte blanche to sack anyone at will.
- Base any termination on sex, race, age, disability, sexual preference, pregnancy, union status or other areas covered by unlawful termination or anti-discrimination laws.
- Force staff to sign any document, such as a resignation, under duress.
- Assume staff on parental leave or worker’s compensation, or part-timers, are a “no go zone” for termination. They can be lawfully sacked, just like any other employee, as long as the reason for the sacking is related to performance, misconduct or redundancy.