Can HR Fire People? Understanding HR’s Role in Termination

The decision to terminate an employee should not rest solely with the HR department, unless the employee in question is actually part of the HR team. 

In most cases, HR plays a supporting and advisory role in the termination process.

Company Policy

It’s crucial to refer to the contract of employment and the employee handbook for guidance on termination procedures. Adhering to company policy is essential to avoid unfair dismissal claims, regardless of the circumstances leading to the termination.

Supporting Role

HR may conduct investigations, chair disciplinary meetings, or provide advice on legal and procedural matters. However, the ultimate decision to terminate an employee’s contract should typically be made by the line manager.

Advisor Role

HR often acts as an advisor, ensuring that the employee’s rights are protected, the process is legal, and the manager is properly trained to handle disciplinary proceedings.


In larger businesses where the employee is in the HR department, HR may have the authority to terminate. However, in most other cases, HR’s role is primarily advisory and supportive.

At Our HR 4 U, we understand the complexities of HR management and employment law. Our team is committed to providing tailored HR solutions for small, medium, and large organisations. 

Whether you need support with termination procedures or general HR advice, we’re here to help. Contact us today at or call 01227 638858 to book a FREE consultation with one of our advisors.

In conclusion, while HR plays a vital role in the termination process, the actual decision to fire an employee should be made by the appropriate line manager, in accordance with company policies and procedures.

Published : May 13, 2024

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