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Czech Supreme Court Makes Important Decision in a Labour-Law Case Counselled by KŠB

KŠB Partner Pavel Dejl and his colleagues won an invalid immediate employment termination case for a major agricultural client before the Czech Supreme Court. 

The company was sued by its employee, who sought to have the immediate termination of his employment held invalid. The company decided to terminate the employee because of an especially gross breach of his obligations after the employee attempted to take company assets without permission. To defend himself, the employee claimed that, although he did not have permission, he believed the assets were of no value to the employer since they were production waste, which – if certain requirements are met – the company allows employees to have for their own needs.

Although the first-instance court dismissed the lawsuit, the employee appealed the decision and the Regional Court in Ústí nad Labem (as the appellate court) decided the case in favour of the employee. After losing the case, the employer asked KŠB to take over and represent it in the special remedy proceedings.

The case ended up before the Czech Supreme Court, which decided the case in favour of KŠB’s client. The Czech Supreme Court held that mutual trust and the employee’s reliability and honesty are of essential importance in an employer-employee relationship, which is why it considers a deliberate attack against the employer’s assets to be an especially gross breach of the employee’s obligations. The fact that the employer allows employees to take production waste (which, however, is still the employer’s property) subject to certain requirements, which the employee failed to meet even though he could have, does not change anything in that respect. More information here (only in Czech).

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