Jump to Content


An employer who decides to dismiss a worker must have a valid reason. Valid reasons include poor performance, serious misconduct or changes to the employer's operations.

Employers should:

  • notify the worker of any unsatisfactory performance and give them a chance to improve
  • have a fair and valid reason for dismissing a worker
  • notify the worker of that reason and give them the opportunity to respond
  • not fire a worker because of personal characteristics such as age, caring responsibilities, chosen gender, disability, race, marital or domestic partnership status, pregnancy, race, religious appearance or dress, sex, sexuality, or spouse or partner's identity
  • give a period of notice according to the worker's award, agreement or contract.

If you have been dismissed and you think there is not a valid reason, you may be able to make a complaint of discrimination with us or an unfair dismissal or unlawful termination claim.

Unfair dismissal and unlawful termination claims generally must be made within 21 days.  For more information about unfair dismissal and unlawful termination, see the links below.

Related information

Copyright © 1996 - 2015 Equal Opportunity Commission of South Australia. Back to Top