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UpdatesJan 31, 2022

When an employee’s private life matters

What an employee does in their private life is their business unless that conduct:

The law provides that “the conduct complained of must be of such gravity or importance as to indicate a rejection or repudiation of the employment contract by the employee. Absent such considerations, an employer has no right to control or regulate an employee’s out-of-hours conduct”.

What out-of-hours conduct might meet these requirements?

Each circumstance needs to be assessed on its own facts.

Considerations include:

Examples of where the requirements outlined above may be met:

Tips to minimise the risk of out-of-hours conduct affecting your business

Set clear expectations of the behaviour and conduct expected to be upheld by employees.

Ensure workplace policies include out-of-hours conduct, where relevant, especially bullying, discrimination and sexual harassment policies.

Ensure employees receive training in relation to these policies and expectations.

By Kelly Godfrey

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