Under British (specifically English) employment law, would an employer be legally allowed to fire an employee who had been having an affair with the employer's girlfriend, or would the employee be entitled to sue for unfair dismissal?
Would it be legal for an employer to fire someone who had been having an affair with his girlfriend? [closed]
5that seems like a Q for law.stackexchange.com– aaaaa says reinstate MonicaSep 19, 2021 at 15:59
1related: workplace.stackexchange.com/questions/7617/… though the employee may not be fired for that action if they work directly with the boyfriend, this question will give an idea of what to expect going forward– Kate GregorySep 19, 2021 at 16:38
1@KateGregory - Oh sure, their life will be a misery until the boss finds a reason to can them.– RichardSep 20, 2021 at 13:30
@Richard If he can can them and they do not end up playing Cancan with him (see responses to the related question).– Captain EmacsSep 20, 2021 at 14:06
In brief, no. Article 8 of the Human Rights Act (1998) enshrines your right to a private life, and this includes having consensual sexual relationships with people you've met at work, up to and including the boss' wife (top tip, don't do this).
Everyone has the right to respect for his private and family life, his home and his correspondence.
If you're fired, you'd have a strong case for unfair dismissal on these grounds, subject to your having more than two years of service with the company.
Note that the usual provisos on being able to fire someone for "not being able to get along with another staff member" wouldn't apply in this case. The underlying cause is still their private and family life, hence the Human Rights Act would supersede that reason, in precisely the same way that you can't fire someone because they've changed their religious beliefs since you hired them.
1Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat.– motosubatsu ♦Sep 20, 2021 at 16:25