Skip to content
Day-to-day employment issues 3C


If your business is faced with having to take disciplinary action against an employee, you may be worried about how you should deal with the dispute and what the outcome will be for everyone involved. It’s a stressful situation and has to be handled with care and thought.

We’ll listen to your concerns and give you the right advice based on your individual needs – there are also ways we can advise you on how to deal with the situation to reduce stress and move things on as quickly and smoothly as possible. Our guidelines can tell you more.

Disciplinary guidelines

  • Follow ACAS code – this is the code of practice approved by the Government, so sticking to it can help.
  • Potential uplift of up to 25% for failure to comply with ACAS Code of Practice
  • Thoroughly investigate the issues
  • Keep suspensions as brief as possible and kept under review. Clarify that it isn’t a form of disciplinary action
  • Inform the employee of the issues in writing – invite them to a hearing, provide evidence
  • There must be a disciplinary meeting or hearing
  • Advise the employee that they can bring a companion
  • Inform the employee of the decision in writing
  • Let the employee know they have a right of appeal
  • Encourage managers to manage conduct and performance issues quickly and informally before they get to a formal disciplinary stage
  • Investigate issues thoroughly
  • Keep written records
  • Communicate decisions effectively and promptly, setting out reasons

At the hearing

  • The business should explain the allegations and go through the evidence
  • The employee should be allowed to set out their case and answer the allegations
  • The employee should have a reasonable opportunity to ask questions, present evidence, call relevant witnesses and raise points about any information provided by the business’s witnesses

Our Employment Law specialists

Sign up to our newsletters - receive updates on our latest legal topics and news