Malky Mackay: His legal options

Unless you avoid all news related to football then you will probably have heard about the situation involving Malky Mackay and Cardiff City owner Vincent Tan. As of this moment the current state of affairs is that Vincent Tan is flying into the country for one last attempt at negotiations following his resign or be dismissed ultimatum. Now Mackay has publicly stated that he won’t resign from his post as manager of Cardiff City and it is probably in his best interest not to do so.

The main reason for this is because he is most likely on a fixed term contract. This means that he will have a contract saying he will be employed for the next 2 or so years and then there will be the option to renew it when it gets closer to the time. If Tan goes on to dismiss Mackay then there is potentially a lucrative pay out awaiting him. Some of this will depend on what clauses he has in his contract but if there is no notice clause (in which they can terminate his contract prior to the end of the contract with a set amount of notice) then he could claim for the entirety of the remainder of his contract. Now we have no idea how long that could be but if like Alan Pardew it is upwards of 8 years then this could be an astonishing amount of money. Obviously if there is a notice clause then the amount they will have to pay him will be limited by the amount of notice required.

On top of this if they do go ahead and dismiss him then he would be entitled to make a claim for unfair dismissal as employees on fixed term contracts still have this right as long as they have the necessary service.  He however is not entitled to double recovery so it would probably be more sensible to just make a claim for breach of contract if it comes to that.

If he does decide to resign then it is likely that there will still be options available to him with regard to making a claim against Tan and Cardiff City. This is because enforced resignations will not stand up well in UK employment law. Indeed it is likely that a Tribunal might classify him as having been dismissed rather than having resigned. If this is the case then unless the Club can put forward a reason why he would be dismissed on the spot (i.e. a gross misconduct reason or something which triggers a clause in his contract) he might be able to claim significant levels of damages against the club on this basis in a constructive dismissal claim.

If you feel you are being put in an untenable position and it looks like you are being forced to resign then please do not hesitate but contact us on [phonenumber] where one of our team will be able to discuss your situation with you. We will advise you on your case and inform you whether we feel your case could be one that is done on a no win no fee basis.