I have been called into a disciplinary meeting. What should I do?
Being called in for a disciplinary meeting can be a stressful time. However, if you are asked to attend such a meeting, there a number of actions you can take to ensure your rights are protected.
- Don’t be rushed into any meeting you should be given at least 24 hours to 48 hours’ notice of any meeting, being sufficient time to gain a support person to attend with you and to take advice, ideally from a lawyer, before you go into the meeting.
- Prior to your meeting, try and obtain details of the allegations against you, preferably in writing. This will give you an opportunity to familiarise yourself with the allegations and prevent any surprises during the meeting. This will also enable you to prepare a response, including gathering any supporting documents to back your claims up.
- Arrange for a support person to attend the meeting with you. Generally, your employer is unable to refuse your request to bring a support person to the meeting. This should be a lawyer or alternatively friend, family member, or union representative. It is usually unwise to take a fellow employee. Not only will your support person provide you with emotional support, they will also be able to witness what happens during the meeting.
- It is a good idea to record the meeting.
- During the meeting, ensure you remain as calm as possible. Take detailed notes of the meeting including who was there, the time and date of the meeting, and what was said. These notes will assist should a claim against your employer arises.
- Try to respond to allegations made against you with contrary evidence. The employer is required to hear your responses to their assertions.
- Do not feel pressured to sign any documents, particularly one agreeing to your resignation.
- If the meeting becomes aggressive, request for the meeting to be rescheduled.
If you consider any action taken against you to be unjustified, please contact us today on (03) 9650 4555 as you may have a claim.