Shrestha v Genesis Housing Association Ltd  EWCA Civ 94; (2015) EMPLR 026
Court of Appeal, Civil Division
Richards, Patten and Vos LJJ
For a misconduct dismissal to be fair, the employer’s investigation into the misconduct must be reasonable. It does not have to be 100% comprehensive. Not every line of defence put forward by the employee needs to be investigated if, viewed overall, the investigation was reasonable.
S’s mileage claims vastly exceeded the AA mileage figures for the journeys undertaken. This applied to every journey. S said at his disciplinary hearing that a number of factors explained the discrepancies - difficulty parking, one-way road systems and road works causing closures and diversions. His employers concluded it was not plausible that there was a legitimate explanation for every single journey. They concluded S was guilty of gross misconduct and dismissed him.
S argued that his dismissal was unfair because the employers had not analysed every journey to check whether the reasons for the extra mileage were valid. The tribunal, upheld by the EAT and Court of Appeal, held employers are not required to investigate every single line of defence put forward so long as, viewed as a whole, the investigation was reasonable.
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