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Investigatory Meeting Procedure

August 2018

This month, Simply-Docs has added a letter which should be used by employers to invite an employee suspected of misconduct to an investigatory hearing.

The ACAS Code of Practice on disciplinary and grievance procedure states that, before deciding whether or not there is a disciplinary case to be answered, the employer should conduct whatever investigations are necessary to consider the facts about the allegation. This may include interviewing the employee accused of the misconduct at an investigatory hearing. It will not always be necessary to hold an investigatory hearing but, if they decide to do so, the employer should clearly explain to the employee that the meeting is an investigatory one and is not a disciplinary hearing.

An investigatory meeting should always be conducted in accordance with the Company's disciplinary policy. Even if the Company disciplinary policy does not provide for investigatory hearings, this additional step can still be included as part of the disciplinary process.

An employee does not have a right to be accompanied to this meeting as no disciplinary action can result, but employers should still give consideration to any request to be accompanied.

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) requires employers to comply with principles for processing personal data, including protecting against unauthorised access or disclosure of personal data. In this context, the employer must ensure that the matter is treated as confidential and information is disclosed only as necessary for the purpose of the investigation.

Under the GDPR, employers should provide information to employees about the personal data that they hold and how it is used. In respect of data collected as part of the disciplinary procedure, this information will usually be provided through a privacy notice which is given to the employee at the start of employment.

The contents of this Newsletter are for reference purposes only and do not constitute legal advice. Independent legal advice should be sought in relation to any specific legal matter.

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