Case Update: Court of Appeal rules that employee demotion amounts to constructive dismissal

In this Case Update series, I share summaries of recent Malaysian court decisions to explore the current approach taken by the courts when deciding on employment-related issues. You can find all the posts in the series by clicking here, including case updates on other legal areas by TheMalaysianLawyer co-founder Lee Shih.

It is recognised that it is a management prerogative for companies to decide on the best way to run their business, and that the courts will be slow to interfere with such management decisions. However, we do still see the courts stepping in when the decisions made by employers are deemed to be unfair, or in breach of the employment contract. I previously wrote about a case where an employee transfer was deemed by the Industrial Court to constitute a constructive dismissal (Case Update: When an employee transfer can amount to a constructive dismissal).

In this case update, I consider the Court of Appeal (“CoA”) case of Ng Teck Fay v. Mahkamah Perusahaan Malaysia & Anor. [2021] 10 CLJ 73, where the CoA found that an employee demotion or re-grading amounted to a constructive dismissal.

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