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Finding a job is never an easy task. There are so many processes that you have to go through. Once you have got a job, you have to work consistently to ensure that you can hold on to it. There are many reasons which can lead an employer to terminate an employee. Subordination is sometimes considered to be one of them. If you have been trying to seek clarity about what subordination is and can you be fired for insubordination?, here is all that you need to know.

What is understood by insubordination?

It is said to be insubordination or disobedience when the employee refuses to obey the employer’s lawful and reasonable order. The refusal on the part of the employee is intentional. That order given to the employee should be a part of their job duties. Refusing to comply with the reasonable order to return to work, consistently failing to arrive to work on time or abandoning shift without permission or refusing to carry out a necessary task when instructed, are all examples of insubordination.

Can insubordination justify dismissal without a notice?

When there is insubordination it could justify the summary dismissal of an employee which means being dismissed without notice. It is because when subordination takes place, there is a complete disregard of the conditions laid down by the employment contract. The contracts state that the employees are to obey the proper orders given by the employer. It lies at the core of an employment relationship, as this is what helps to direct the workforce.

For the employer to justify summary dismissal, the subordination must be wilful. When there is a failure to obey an order because the order wasn’t clear or there was reasonable confusion, then it isn’t considered as a cause for summary dismissal. In situations where the employer is unable to give unequivocal instructions, the employee can’t be terminated for failure to perform the task. It also applies when the employer gives a suggestion rather than an order.

What is single incident insubordination?

When there is a single incident of insubordination, it can rarely justify the summary dismissal. It will only happen in an exceptional situation. It could be when the single incident has led to a repudiation of the employment contract. In situations where the incident is minor, the chances of it justifying the summary dismissal are low. When the employer gives the impression that the order is inconsequential, the employer might not be able to go ahead with the dismissal for simple failure to comply. Another determining factor is whether insubordination has caused damage to the employment relationship. Often, a single incident isn’t enough to justify the dismissal.

What are multiple incidents of insubordination?

Most of the time, a single incident can’t justify summary dismissal. When there are multiple minor incidents, it could justify dismissal. For example, an employee has been consistently showing up late even after being given several warnings. It could be summarily dismissed for insubordination. When there are several instances of insubordination, they are all put together. This works to justify summary dismissal.

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