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Staff member stealing from the Till

Staff member stealing cash from Till - what should I do?

Nothing -   at least until you work through exactly what is happening.   The first question you have to ask is “how do you know the person is stealing cash from the till”?     Has somebody reported this?   Are you just assuming it because there is shortfall in the cash or do you have strong evidence such as an overhead CCT camera trained down on the Till. You also have to ask was it  ‘stealing’?   for example is there only one instance of shortage in the Till,  where it could be explained away by a mistake.   

The next thing you have to consider is  - do you have the proper disciplinary procedures put in place?   Do you have these procedures set out in the Letter of Appointment or Contract of Employment which should have been given to the employee when they started. The letter itself wouldn’t have to specify the disciplinary procedure but should refer to an Employment Handbook which should set all of these things out.

You will have to call in the employee and put this evidence to them.   If they deny all responsibility you can suspend them pending an investigation and fix a date for them to come back to give their reply either in writing or in person and call any witnesses that they have the right to call.

All of this depends on whether or not the staff member has rights under the Unfair Dismissals Act  - that is 12 months plus qualified employment period.  If their employment period is less than that then you can dismiss them without reason but usually with two weeks notice or pay in lieu. If your employee has the protection of the Unfair Dismissals Act be very careful. A dismissal that is not properly constituted is automatically considered unfair and you will have to pay compensation. For further advice you should talk to a solicitor who has experience in Employment Law or if you are a member of the Chamber of Commerce call their Members' Services Officer.

The issues raised in the answer to this NewsTalk listener's question are dealt with in a general way as can only be the case on live radio. Before relying on the advice given in this answer, whether you heard the broadcast or are for the first time reading the issues here please do not rely on the broad advice given. For a detailed professional opinion please consult a qualified legal advisor and for further details read our disclaimer on the Home Page.

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