In a situation when an employee makes a protected disclosure and subsequently, while the protected disclosure is being investigated goes on sick leave due to stress, could a lowering of the employee's income because they will be paid illness benefit (which is lower than their normal salary) constitute penalisation of the person making the protected disclosure?

Posted in : First Tuesday Q&A ROI on 3 January 2017
Zelda Cunningham
Arthur Cox
Issues covered:

Under the Protected Disclosures Act 2014, penalisation is defined as follows:

(a) suspension, lay-off or dismissal,
(b) demotion or loss of opportunity for promotion,
(c) transfer of duties, change of location of place of work, reduction in wages or change in working hours,
(d) the imposition or administering of any discipline, reprimand or other penalty (including a financial penalty),
(e) unfair treatment,
(f) coercion, intimidation or harassment,
(g) discrimination, disadvantage or unfair treatment,
(h) injury, damage or loss, and
(i) threat of reprisal;

If an employer treats an employee who made a protected disclosure less favourably than other employees, the employer could be deemed to have

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Back to Q&A's This article is correct at 03/01/2017

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Zelda Cunningham
Arthur Cox

The main content of this article was provided by Zelda Cunningham. Contact telephone number is +353 1 618 0000 or email

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