A bank has been ordered to re-employ a bank official it unfairly sacked him over the interest rates on an account owned by his parents, writes Gordon Deegan.
The dismissal letter claimed the banker “deliberately and repeatedly manipulated the bank’s system to apply a rate of interest to his parents’ deposit account that was significantly higher than the market rate available to other customers”.
However, at the end of a five-day hearing into the case and a 29,000 word report, Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) adjudication officer, Kevin Baneham ruled the employee was unfairly dismissed.
The employee said other people had direct involvement in applying the interest rate to the account and that the bank had signed off on the account on a monthly basis.
The banker was employed with the bank from January 2003 to December 2015 when he was dismissed on the grounds of gross misconduct.
Mr Baneham ruled he be re-instated despite the bank claiming that this would lead to “future friction, disharmony and possibly an acrimonious relationship”.
In the ruling, Mr Baneham said: “There was no reasonable basis to conclude that the complainant had been dishonest or was guilty of theft. There was no reasonable basis to find that the complainant’s actions amounted to serious and persistent negligent of respondent instructions to be gross misconduct.”
Mr Baneham found that the banker was praised in a 2014 work appraisal for his part in a case in which the employee said he saved a client and the bank £570,000.
The employee was a popular and successful worker since he joined the bank, according to the ruling.