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I’ve been called to a disciplinary meeting but I know they are just going through the motions so they can fire me — what should I do?

It’s worth bearing in mind that an employer cannot just ‘go through the motions’ — they need to follow a fair disciplinary procedure. This could take months, with a series of disciplinary meetings, warnings and opportunities to improve before you are finally dismissed. During this time, you continue to be paid, and the employer knows that when you are dismissed there is still a risk that you could bring a claim against them.

You should attend any meetings that are arranged, and be fully prepared to argue your case. You have the right to be accompanied and can ask a trade union representative or a work colleague to come with you. The evidence you use to defend yourself may help if you later try to show that your dismissal was unfair.

If you believe that your employment will terminate in any event, the best solution is often to negotiate a settlement agreement. The employer pays you compensation, you give up the right to make a claim to an employment tribunal or court, and your employment is terminated. Your lawyer can advise you how to approach your employer and help you negotiate the settlement agreement.

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