What is constructive dismissal?

Book your free initial call

    We endeavour to make an initial response to all enquiries within 24 hours but please be aware that on some occasions due to prior commitments or volume of calls we will not be able to respond in that time frame. We also operate a 48 hour return policy. This return policy means that if we have not responded with 48 hours of your initial enquiry we are unable to do so due to current workloads and we will destroy your data accordingly. This policy ensures you are not left waiting and have the certainty that your data is not compromised. In most instances however we are able to make contact within a 24 hour time frame. Please note our free initial advice service is available to clients at our total discretion and if your case is of a complex nature we may not be able to offer you a free consultation. However in these instances we will advise you what the charge would be for an initial fixed fee consultation.
  • (view our privacy statement)
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

This is a question that is frequently asked as cases where an employee resigns in response to their employer’s conduct are often called constructive dismissal. It is however still a claim for unfair dismissal and not a separate claim.

In these cases, you have the additional burden of proving dismissal if you are an employee. Claims for constructive unfair dismissal are statistically harder to win because you need to establish dismissal. The burden is on the employee to show that there was a dismissal in the legal sense. In such cases, the employee must show the following:

  1. His employer has committed a serious breach of the contract i.e. a repudiatory breach. The leading case is Western Excavating Ltd v Sharp [1978]
  2. He has left because of the breach;
  3. He has not waived the breach known as affirming the contract i.e. he must not delay his resignation too long or do anything else which accepts acceptance of the breach;