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MoJA former worker at the well-known telecoms giant Sky has won a sizeable award after he was dismissed from his job in 2013.

Sky Subscriber Services were ordered to pay Mr Steven Ritchie almost £40,000 in compensation after he was dismissed in October 2013 on allegations that he was racist.

Mr Ritchie, of Dunfermline, was sacked from his customer support role at  the Sky Subscriber Services call centre in Dunfermline after he told the daughter of a Vietnamese customer that he would have expected her father, as the account holder, to have learned to speak enough English to enable him to supply a security password over the telephone. The customer then emailed the CEO of Sky Subscriber Services, Mr Jeremy Darroch, to complain that Mr Ritchie.

After the complaint was made Mr Ritchie was suspended and investigated. He was then dismissed for gross misconduct.

After being dismissed Mr Ritchie made a claim for unfair dismissal to the Dundee Employment Tribunal, alleging that the procedure used to dismiss him and the decision to dismiss him were unfair and unreasonable.

Mr Ritchie’s claim came to the Dundee Employment Tribunal earlier this year, with Mr Ritchie giving evidence at the Tribunal that he believed that the dismissal process was a “sham”. The Employment Tribunal found in favour of Mr Ritchie in his claim for unfair dismissal, holding that Sky had failed to consider other options than dismissal and that no reasonable employer would have dismissed Mr Ritchie on the basis of the allegations. The Employment Tribunal did, however, find that the processes that Sky Subscriber Services had used in dismissing Mr Ritchie were reasonable, and reduced the compensation awarded to Mr Ritchie for this reason.

The Employment Tribunal awarded Mr Ritchie a substantial amount in compensation, although this was reduced to £37,943.

Chris Hadrill, an employment solicitor at Redmans, commented on the case: “Employers must not make ‘knee-jerk’ decisions to dismiss employees but must undertake a fair investigation and make a decision to dismiss (if this is in fact appropriate) based upon the facts that the investigation have determined. It is also crucial that the decision to dismiss be proportionate to the allegation – if an overly-harsh sanction is imposed then this could lead to an Employment Tribunal claim.

If you believe that you have a claim for unfair dismissal then call our specialist employment solicitors on 020 3397 3603 and talk right away to an expert in employment tribunal litigation and unfair dismissal claims

About

Redmans Employment Team deal with employment matters for both employers and employees, including drafting employment contracts and policies, advising employers and employees on compromise agreements, handling day-to-day HR issues, advising on restructures, and handling Employment Tribunal cases for both employers and employees Call 020 3397 3603 to speak to one of the members of our employment team or email us on enquiries@redmans.co.uk. Redmans have offices in Richmond, Chiswick, Hammersmith, Fulham, Kingston, Wimbledon, Ealing, Kings Cross and Marylebone (meetings strictly by appointment only).

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Samantha K

Absolutely brilliant thank you. Caroline Lewis is a legend

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Anonymous

The legal advice was clear and helpful.

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Good Service

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I was using Redmans services for a Settlement Agreement. Very quick and professional service. The outcome was favourable and I was very pleased with the amendments and results. Pretty glad to recommend them for any type of legal advice.

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Chris was always prompt to help me with legal matters that are beyond my comprehension and very helpful leasing with my former employer. I would recommend Redmans Solicitors to everyone who needs help.

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Redmans solicitor's helped me with my settlement agreement, Chris has been very helpful throughout the process.He was very prompt in his responses and made my settlement look simple.Special thanks to Caroline for her efficient communication, thorough explaination of contract terminology and negotiations.I highly reccommend Redmans solicitors for anyone seeking employment related legal help.

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Wonderful experience.Chris was very responsive and provided an excellent service. A real professional who I would recommend to anyone

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Their guidance was clear and they provided me with all the information I required. Friendly yet professional

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Anonymous

Chris @ Redmans assisted me with an employment issue. Firstly, he was very proactive in coming back to my initial enquiry and then helped to clearly lay out the options that I had in relation to my position. He then assisted with the preparation of my case, which led to a very satisfactory outcome. I would highly recommend the quality of service & professionalism offered by Redmans Solicitors.

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Great service

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Anonymous

Chris was very effective and decisive in dealing with my matter. I felt guided, and the pressure to make decisions was taken off my shoulders; he knew what needed to be done and I was happy to follow his advice. The result of the legal dispute was a great success for me. He is also kind and personable. The only thing that I would say it could be improved, is the accuracy of cost estimation at the beginning: not many activites, that could not have been forseen had to take place, but costs went up more than double in the end. Overall very good and trustworthy. I would definately recommend and use Redmans services again.

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An excellent professional service was provided by Chris Hadrill and Mel Chin. Efficient and trustworthy - would highly recommend this company.

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Redmans Solicitors were great. They were able to advice me quickly and efficiently! I would recommend them, as a good solicitors to use.

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