As widely reported this week, Ant McPartlin (of Ant and Dec fame) was arrested yesterday on suspicion of drink driving. He allegedly failed a roadside breathalyser test after a crash involving three cars. McPartlin has now stepped down from his upcoming TV roles, in what an ITV spokesman referred to as ‘a joint decision’.
The incident raises tricky questions for employers: what do you do if one of your employees has been charged with drink driving? Below, our Employment lawyer, David Sheppard, shares his legal view for Metro's article.
‘Dismissal is not an automatic consequence of an employee’s drink driving charge or conviction,’ says David Sheppard, employment lawyer at Cardiff and London based firm Capital Law. ‘A drink driving criminal charge is very often the consequence of an employee’s wider personal problems (of which Ant’s have been widely publicised), and employers must weigh up the best course of action for their business. ‘Employers also need to be alert to the possibility that drink driving may be in consequence of underlying health issues which could constitute a protected disability, meaning that an employer must objectively and carefully, decide whether it can reasonably dismiss or if it is more appropriate to support the employee in their recovery and make adjustments to their role.’