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SOSR dismissals and dismissal and re-engagement (fire and re-hire)


There are two requirements for a dismissal under UK law: it must be fair, and it must be reasonable. “Some other substantial reason” (s.98(1)(b)) is a “catch all”. It allows an employer to dismiss an employee when none of the other potentially fair reasons apply, and can be used in a variety of scenarios.

Key points 

  • Whilst it may seem that SOSR allows an employer to dismiss for any reason, this is not the case. To use this as a reason for reason for dismissal, the courts have confirmed that the reason cannot be whimsical, but substantial, which can only be determined by the facts of the specific case at hand. 

  • Common uses for this type of dismissal are when an individual has been employed to cover for an absent employee, such as when an employee goes onto maternity leave. 

  • It is also commonly used in reorganisations that do not fit the definition of redundancy, such as where an employer needs to forcibly change terms and conditions, otherwise known as "fire and re-hire".