1. Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Daniel Smyth was fired after taking an unapproved holiday to India REUTERS/Staff Photographer


  • Australian Daniel Smyth told bosses he was sick and could not attend work during June and July 2016.
  • Pictures posted to his Facebook account showed he had attended a wedding in India.

Employees who pull 'sickies' usually have the foresight to refrain from posting fun-filled pictures to their social media accounts – but not this Australian man.

A tribunal in Southern Australia has ruled an employer was in order after firing a worker who went on holidays to India after making an excuse he could not work due to illness.

Daniel Smyth was sacked from his job at Hove-based Alwyndor Aged Care in July 2016 after bosses discovered pictures of him attending a wedding in India.

Smyth had provided the company's HR department with two medical sickness notes covering the period from 8 June to 18 July, 2016, but instead used the time off to go abroad.

Smyth had previously been forced to take unpaid leave after he was jailed for 81 days for driving while disqualified. Upon his return he asked management if he could take holidays for later that year, a request which was subsequently turned down.

"The period for the second certificate was for the same period Mr Smyth had sought and been denied annual leave," tribunal commissioner Paul McMahon said.

"During this period of time off, Alwyndor became aware of Facebook posts that indicated Mr Smyth was in India attending the marriage of a relative of his wife."

Smyth - who suffers from depression and bipolar disorder – says he was given a chance to explain himself at a HR meeting but refused to attend. His doctor gave evidence at the tribunal and said that his time in jail had left his patient depressed.

Alwyndor manager Travis Hill told the employment court that he believed Smyth had exaggerated the extent of his illness to doctors. Smyth had a displayed an arrogant "you can't touch me" attitude in the final meeting before his dismissal, Hill claimed.

In the final decision, McMahon said that Smyth did indeed have a genuine illness but said his employers were right to suspect his claims were bogus and ruled the case in their favour.