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5.2 Preliminary Steps for Discharge

Manual: Employment and Separation Procedures

Subsection: Separation Procedures

The discharge procedure is used by an employer to separate a status employee. The employee may request the Merit Board to provide a Hearing on charges for discharge, at which time the employer must defend the charges for discharge before a Hearing Officer or Hearing Board convened by the Merit Board.

Before commencing discharge proceedings, the employer shall review section 250.110(f) of the Illinois Administrative Code (80 Ill. Adm. Code §250.110(f)). When the employer decides that a discharge is the only solution to an unsatisfactory situation, the employer shall:

  1. Reduce the reasons for discharge to writing and include:
    • Efforts which have been taken by the employer to help the employee correct any deficiencies.
    • Disciplinary actions, less severe than discharge, which have been previously invoked to impress upon the employee the seriousness of the employee's deficiencies.

      NOTE: A strong defense of a discharge will include evidence that the employer has made every reasonable effort, short of discharge, to help an employee correct deficiencies.

  2. Discuss the entire discharge proceeding with legal counsel.

Prior to service of Written Charges for Discharge:

  1. The employer shall notify the employee in writing of the intent to discharge. This notification must advise the employee of the substance of the charges in sufficient detail to inform the employee of the nature of the conduct on which the proposed charges are to be based.
  2. The notification of intent to discharge shall also advise the employee of the option of requiring a conference between the employer, the employee, and the employee's representative; or the option of responding to the employer's notification in writing; or both.
  3. If the presence of the employee on the job constitutes a substantial risk of injury to life or damage to property, the employee may be placed on excused absence with pay during all or any part of the preliminary proceedings to provide the employer an opportunity to investigate serious charges.

(Reference 80 Ill. Adm. Code §250.110(f))
Revised 5/16/2012