A notice of termination of an employee due to poor performance and cooperation difficulties, related to a disability in the form of autism, was based on objective grounds. Therefore, the termination was not in violation of the Employment Protection Act.
The performance carried out by an employee diagnosed with autism, was significantly lower than what may be required of an employee with the position in question.
The employee’s poor performance resulted in conflicts and cooperation difficulties in the workplace. The employer took a wide range of measures in order to increase the work results of the employee, but without success. Due to poor performance and related cooperation difficulties, the employer terminated the employment.
However, one week before the termination, it was clear from a neuropsychiatric statement that the employee met the criteria for an autism diagnosis. The employee claimed that the termination was in violation of the Employment Protection Act as objective grounds for notice of termination did not exist, and that the employer should be liable for general damages to the employee. The employee alleged that any poor performance and cooperation difficulties were due to her disability and that the employer had not taken the necessary measures in regards of this disability.
The Labour Court found that the employee’s performance had been significantly lower than what may be required of the employee, which resulted in conflicts and serious cooperation difficulties with the employee in the workplace.
The Court declared that the poor performance as well as the cooperation difficulties were related to the employee’s disability in the form of autism. According to the Court, the measures taken by the employer had mainly been suitable for adapting the work to the employee’s disability and the employer cannot be blamed for the fact that the employee’s diagnosis had not been clarified before.
The Court concluded that the employer, after becoming aware of the employee’s diagnosis, could not have solved the problems related to the employee’s poor performance and cooperation difficulties. Thus, the Court found that objective grounds for notice of termination did exist and therefore, the termination was not in violation of the Employment Protection Act.
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