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Constructive Dismissal

As an employer, it can be difficult to manage relationships with employees, particularly where they have started to break down. If relations become too difficult, you may find that your employee resigns and tries to make a claim for unfair dismissal against you.

If you’re in this situation or you if you’re having a difficult time with one of your employees and you’re concerned, call now on 0117 926 4121 or make a Free Online Enquiry.

What Is Constructive Dismissal?

Constructive Dismissal is a term used for when an employee feels forced to resign their position because of their employer’s behaviour or conduct. Your behaviour as an employer forced them to terminate their contract.

The burden of proof actually shifts to the employee in a constructive dismissal claim. This means that the employee must show either:

  • a fundamental breach of their employment contract or
  • a series of more minor breaches but with a “final straw event”

In addition to this, the employee must show that they didn’t consent to the breach of their contract. This is usually, but not always demonstrated when they resign immediately or soon after the event or series of events. This can be called the ‘final straw’.

Try To Resolve The Issues First

You should try to resolve any issues you have with your employees in a sensible manner, using an open dialogue. Make sure you make a note of all meetings, conversations and issues so you can easily recall what happened.

If you think the issues between you and your employee are beyond resolution and they may have grounds for making a constructive dismissal claim against you, you might want to consider suggesting a settlement agreement.

This will allow you (as long as your employee agrees to take the settlement agreement) to terminate their employment and avoid them making a claim against you at an Employment Tribunal.

Offering a settlement agreement means that you will have to pay out some settlement money to your employee, but it will probably be significantly less than the amount you would have to pay should the claim end up at tribunal.

If you want to discuss your options, please contact Alex Lyttle on 0117 926 4121 or make a Free Online Enquiry. We offer a free, initial discussion about your circumstances.

If You’re Facing a Claim


If your employee has resigned and is making a claim against you for constructive dismissal, you should take advice from a specialist employment solicitor as soon as possible. Getting help at an early stage can help you decide the most cost effective way to deal with the claim, either by settling it or defending it.

A specialist employment law solicitor will be the right person to help you decide what steps to take.

Our Expertise

Alex has been working in employment law for many years. He can help you to understand all your options in detail, including the cost implications of each. Once you are fully informed of your choice, you can work out the best way forward for your business.

Understanding the fees involved in any potential claim is important for any business. We’ll explain fully the costs involved at each stage and help you decide how you want to proceed.

We offer a free initial discussion, so call now on 0117 926 4121 or make a Free Online Enquiry.