On 16 March 2022, the Supreme Court accepted for cognisance at a hearing a cassation appeal drawn up on behalf of our Client – a dismissed employee.
The dispute concerns a case, in which the employment contract with the employee was terminated with a notice period due to liquidation of the position. The employee’s employment relationship was under special protection, and the employer breached the regulations on dismissal by failing to obtain the mandatory consent of the relevant medical council, of which the plaintiff was a member. The employee appealed against the dismissal, requesting reinstatement. The Court of First Instance upheld the claim as justified and reinstated the plaintiff to work at the defendant Hospital under the previous conditions.
As a result of considering the appeal of the defendant employer, the Court of Second Instance amended the judgment of the Court of First Instance in such a way that it awarded the employee the amount of PLN 49,236.93 with statutory interest for delay in payment, as compensation due to termination of the employment contract in violation of the provisions of law. The Court stated that reinstatement (as requested) would be contrary to the social and economic purpose of the employee’s right due to the alleged violation of the principles of social co-existence by the employee. This violation was to manifest itself, inter alia, in the declaration of filing further claims for payment of remuneration for the period of unemployment in the future.
The dismissed employee did not agree with the decision of the Regional Court in Poznań. The plaintiff takes the position that, pursuant to Article 45 § 1 of the Labour Code, the Court was bound by the demand for reinstatement filed in the proceedings. As a consequence, the Court of Second Instance exceeded the scope of its cognition and ruled on what the plaintiff did not demand. In the case, the prerequisites for termination of the employment contract in violation of the provisions of the law were met, and at the same time there were no circumstances justifying the inadvisability or impossibility of reinstatement. Also, the conduct of the employee towards the employer certainly did not violate the principles of social co-existence.
The case is handled by Ewelina Jeglikowska, attorney-at-law, and Paulina Kozłowska, barrister.
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