KUALA LUMPUR: An accounts and administrative executive, who was under probation, was awarded the maximum of 12 months in back wages for being dismissed from work without a reason.
However, Industrial Court chairman D Paramalingam deducted 10% of the total RM21,600 as A Anne Adeline had found a job immediately after her dismissal. She received RM19,440.
Paramalingam said an employee’s service could not be terminated during the probationary period, except for misconduct.
“A probationer would have to be assessed on his or her performance to gauge his or her suitability to be confirmed as a permanent employee in the company,” he said.
He said Anne’s service to the employer, Seri Anggun Condominium JMB, was discontinued without any reason being provided.
Paramalingam said throughout Anne’s employment duration, Seri Anggun Condominium did not bother to send a letter to confirm her position and more importantly it had not told her whether her probation was extended as provided in her Feb 3, 2021, appointment letter.
He said since Anne did not receive such a notice, her probation period remained.
Paramalingam said it was also clear from the pleadings and submissions of the parties that Anne was not terminated due to her performance or misconduct.
He said at the very most, the termination could be due to Anne’s alleged conflict of interest as she was also an owner of a condominium unit at the Seri Anggun Condominium complex which her employer managed.
Seri Anggun Condominium never proved this issue of conflict of interest in court.
Anne was employed with a monthly salary of RM1,800 on Feb 3 and placed on three months’ probation.
Paramalingam said despite being a probationer, she was entitled to similar protection as that accorded to confirmed employees.
“However, there can be no order for reinstatement. The claimant, being a probationer, holds no lien to the appointment,” he said in his 21-page award released last week.
He said since Anne had merely worked for seven months and had not completed even one year of service, the court would not award any compensation in lieu of reinstatement.
“Para 2 of the Second Schedule of the Industrial Relations Act 1967 provides that in the case of a probationer who has been dismissed without just cause or excuse, any back wages given shall not exceed 12 months from the date of dismissal based on his/her last drawn salary,” he said.
Seri Anggun Condominium was represented by Sreedhara Naidu while Anne was represented by Francis Pereira.