A postman who was sacked for removing unfranked stamps from letters on his
delivery round has won his claim for unfair dismissal. Following the discovery
of stamps valuing around £23 in his wallet, he was suspended and accused
The postman argued that he had simply removed the stamps to prevent them being
used again and did not intend to use them personally or sell the stamps. Furthermore,
he contended that he had never been told not to take the stamps and that this
practice was commonplace.
The tribunal held that the investigation did not properly consider whether
the removal of unfranked stamps was common practice. However the tribunal found
that the postman was 75% to blame because of his conduct and that this should
be reflected in his compensation being reduced by a further 50%.
This case underlines the importance of workplace rules and procedures being
drafted in sufficient detail, as well as being regularly updated to take into
account changes in workplace practice and legislation.