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PUBLISHED BY Arlati Ghislandi
Disciplinary dismissal: disproportionate penalties in case of private use of company computer

With Ruling N. 6222 of 18 March 2014, the Court of Cassation ordered that the use, even daily, of a company’s email address for private purposes, as well as the installation on the computer of non-work-related programs, does not constitute a violation sufficient to authorise the dismissal of an employee.

The contested event corresponded, among other things, to the disciplinary case provided for in the applicable collective bargaining agreement, which expressly called for a conservative penalty (written reprimand, fine or suspension) for the infringement involving an “improper use of company tools.”

Therefore, according to the Supreme Court, the employer cannot impose a more severe sanction (dismissal) than the one set forth in the applicable collective bargaining agreement.