If you have quit or resigned due to circumstances caused by your employer, it may be considered constructive dismissal. Constructive Dismissal occurs when a party terminates their employment without official termination by the employer but the employer either through actions or omissions causes the termination. In order for it be considered Constructive Dismissal, the actions or omissions must be:
- the main reason an employee has terminated their employment;
- objectively unreasonable, and
- to be something that the employee cannot reasonably expect to put up with.
Constructive Dismissal and Workplace Policy
In Thomson v Orica Australia Pty Ltd the employer changed the applicants’ role upon their return from family leave. The applicant argued that this was in contravention of the employers Family Leave Policy as the role was significantly different to the role she had held previously and in some ways would be considered a demotion. The court found that serious contravention of a workplace policy is a breach of an implied term of employment and the consequences of such, are similar to a serious breach of an employment contract, being termination. Thus it was found that the applicant had been constructively dismissed by way of the employers’serious contravention of their own workplace policy.