Western Australian Industrial Relations Commission

AWOL employee dismissal 'not in any way unfair'

The Commission dismissed a claim of unfair dismissal by an employee of a small driving school business.  Commissioner Matthews found that the employer's decision to dismiss the applicant was justified because the applicant left the employers' business unattended without informing them.  The Commission found that, in light of the employee's complex and chequered employment history (given that the applicant was the son of one of the respondents and was employed mainly due to this rather than inherent suitability), it was not in any way unfair for the employer to terminate the employment on two weeks' notice. 

The applicant tried to convince the Commission that he forewarned his employer that he would be absent.  Commissioner Matthews found it inconceivable that the employers would have left the applicant in charge of the office while they were absent if they knew he would not be there all day. 

The decision can be read here

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