16th December 2021

Employment Law Advent Calendar: Day 16

It’s the 16th of December and yule be sorry if you don’t look behind door number 16 for who or what is there to help employers make everything in the workplace tremendous this Christmas.

It’s a payslip

Although we’re being urged by the Scottish Government to limit our socialising either side of Christmas and when we do socialise to limit that to three households, we can still enjoy a meal out or drinks with family and friends. For those that do, there will be some who don’t know, or ignore, their limits when it comes to alcohol and the last thing they will want to face the morning after the night before, is work.

Any employer who wants to make a deduction from an employee’s pay for turning up late for work should have that right in the contract of employment otherwise the employer will have to answer to an unlawful deduction from wages claim. Alternatively, an employer could ask the employee to sign a separate document in advance of being late that clearly confirms their agreement to a quantifiable deduction being made in those specific circumstances. Realistically, their response will be ‘Get the elf out of here’; no employee who thinks there’s even a chance they could be late for work will not agree to signing a document like this.

Being late for work is misconduct and disciplinary action can be taken, but the disciplinary procedure should be followed and a deduction from wages should not be imposed as a disciplinary sanction unless the procedure (or the contract) allows for it.

Make sure you elf a merry little Christmas and contact a member of the Blackadders Employment Team working in Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Perth and across Scotland for help and advice.

Donna Reynolds, Partner
Accredited by the Law Society of Scotland as a Specialist in Employment Law & Discrimination Law
Employment Law
Blackadders LLP


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