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Must employees report their own misconduct?

Within every contract of employment there is an implied duty of trust and confidence, however does this implied duty extend to an employee having to disclose their own misconduct? 

This issue was recently dealt with by the EAT in The Basildon Academies (“the Academies”) v Amadi. In this case Mr Amadi, a Cover Supervisor, for the Academies was dismissed for breaching his contract by not disclosing an allegation of sexually assaulting a pupil at Richmond upon Thames College. The Academies argued that Mr Amadi breached his express contract as well as the implied duty. 

Upon examination of Mr Amadi’s contract there was no express duty on him to inform the Academies of all allegations made against him, there was only a duty to disclose allegations that he knew or had reason to believe were true. The allegations of sexual assault were investigated by the police and no criminal action was taken against Mr Amadi. Therefore the EAT held that in the absence of an express contractual duty to inform the Academies of all allegations, no matter how ill-founded or improper, there was no implied duty to inform the Academies of the allegations of sexual assault. Accordingly, the dismissal was held to be unfair. 


The moral of the story for employers is twofold: 

(1) Always scrutinise the terms and conditions of an employee’s contract before a dismissal for breaching a contractual duty. Where the line seems blurred seek independent legal advice and 

(2) Be cautious when relying on an implied duty for the purposes of dismissal. 

As always if I can provide you with any further assistance on contractual or issues, disciplinary ease do not hesitate to contact me for a free consultation on 0113 350 4030 or samira.cakali@scesolicitors.co.uk

Please note that the information in this blog is to provide information of general interest in a summary manner and should not be construed as individual legal advice. Readers should consult with SCE Solicitors or other professional counsel before acting on the information contained here

Samira Cakali

Samira Cakali is a pragmatic and approachable solicitor advocate with extensive contentious and non-contentious experience in the fields of employment law as well as civil litigation, within a range of commercial businesses from SME’s to multinationals as well as senior executives.

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