On appeal from: [2009] EWCA Civ 648

The question before the Court what was “the effective date of termination” of the claimant’s employment? Gisda Cyf, her employer, informed her by recorded delivery letter that she had been summarily dismissed for gross misconduct. Was the effective date of termination the date when the dismissal letter was written and posted (29 Nov 2006), or the date when it was delivered to her home address (30 Nov 2006), or was it the date when she opened the letter and read of her summary dismissal (4 Dec 2006)? The Supreme Court unanimously dismissed the employer’s appeal. Held: the effective date of termination is when the employee is informed of the dismissal or when the employee has had a reasonable opportunity of discovering that she has been dismissed; it is correct to include consideration of the behaviour of the employee in an assessment of whether the employee has had a reasonable opportunity to find out about the dismissal.

For judgment, please download: [2010] UKSC 41
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