Advising managers: how to suspend an employee
Advising managers: how to suspend an employee

The following Employment guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Advising managers: how to suspend an employee
  • Legal considerations and implications
  • Acas Code of Practice and guidance
  • Right to be accompanied
  • When to suspend an employee
  • Who should carry out the suspension
  • How to suspend an employee
  • The length of a suspension
  • Pay during suspension
  • Record keeping requirements
  • more

A suspension is a period of time when an employee is required by their employer to abstain from their normal work. If the employee usually works at the employer's premises, and/or out and about with customers, this means they will not attend their normal place of work during the suspension. If the employee normally works from home, it means that they will refrain from undertaking the normal tasks and duties associated with their work.

Suspension is used as a protective measure while the employer investigates allegations of serious misconduct against an employee, and the employer has reason to believe that the employee's continued presence in the workplace or performance of duties may:

  1. impede the investigation into the allegations, or

  2. present a serious risk to the interests of the business, its customers, or other employees

Legal considerations and implications

In some circumstances, an employee may be able to claim their employer has breached their contract by suspending them.

The implied obligation to provide work

As long as the employee is paid, there is no general implied duty to provide work that applies in all circumstances. Rather, whether there is a right to work depends on the terms of the employment contract.

An implied duty to provide work may, for example, exist where:

  1. earning capacity depends on working (eg pieceworkers, workers on commission)

  1. workers are