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NSM Music Ltd v Mcardle - Automatically unfair dismissal for failure to follow the now repealed 2004 statutory dispute resolution procedures [2010] EAT

Whilst deciding to dismiss an employee prior to holding the Step Two meeting required under the now repealed/revoked 2004 statutory dispute resolution procedures might raise serious questions as to the fairness of the decision to dismiss, this did not amount to non-compliance with those procedures and did not therefore render the dismissal automatically unfair.

NSM Music Ltd manufactured and supplied jukeboxes to pubs and bars. Mr McArdle had been dismissed by NSM for misconduct after an incident in which he had made up a mock music disc for a client called the "Dog and Wanker", a barely-concealed reference to a public house called the "Dog and Parrot", a client of NSM's.  NSM dismissed Mr McArdle for his conduct but during the disciplinary process they falsely claimed that the offending disc had been sent to the client by mistake. It also appeared that they had taken the decision to dismiss Mr McArdle prior to the disciplinary hearing taking place for having written the offending words on the disc.

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