An employee cannot be fired because he is not “fun” enough

The Court of Cassation has just partially canceled a dismissal following the “critical behavior of the employee and his refusal to accept the company’s policy based on incitement to various excesses” such as excessive alcoholism during end-of-stay drinks. week.

An employee who does not participate in all the aperitifs organized by his employer or who criticizes the excessive alcohol consumption of the teams during these “moments of conviviality” cannot be dismissed for this.

This is what the Court of Cassation considered in a stop returned on November 9.

A brief reminder of the facts. The employee in question was hired in 2011 by the company Cubik Partners, as a senior consultant, then promoted to director in 2014. He was dismissed a year later for “professional incompetence” and in particular his refusal to adhere to the value ” company’s “fun & pro”.

After a decision at the Prud’hommes, the case is referred to the Court of Appeal and its verdict gives rise to an appeal in cassation by both parties.


The employee considers in this case to have been dismissed following “critical behavior and his refusal to accept the company’s policy based on incitement to various excesses” can be read in the judgment.

In this judgment, the magistrates in fact considered “that the dismissal (has) taken place because of the exercise by the employee of his freedom of expression; that the Court of Appeal found that it could not be reproached to Mr T. his lack of integration of the “fun & pro” value of the company”.

According to the Court, this value was reflected “by the necessary participation in seminars and weekend drinks, frequently generating excessive alcoholism encouraged by the associates who made available very large quantities of alcohol, and by practices advocated by the associates linking promiscuity, bullying and incitement to various excesses and excesses”.

“Excessive alcoholism, bullying, slip-ups, humiliating practices”

“The reproach addressed to the employee in the dismissal letter of refusing to accept the company’s policy and the sharing of the “fun & pro” values ​​could not be considered as a violation of his freedom of expression, when the refusal to Mr T to adhere to these “values” participated in his freedom of opinion and expression” can we read.

Moreover, the dismissal occurred “in violation of the employee’s fundamental right to dignity and respect for his private life (…) the “fun & pro” culture in force in the company was characterized by humiliating and intrusive practices in private life such as simulacra of sexual acts, the obligation to share one’s bed with another collaborator during seminars, the use of nicknames to designate people and the display in offices of distorted and made-up photos” .

The Court of Cassation therefore canceled part of the judgment of the Court of Appeal and ordered the employer to pay the employee the sum of 3,000 euros.

The other points and in particular the amount of compensation to be paid by the company (the employee claims 461,406 euros) will be examined again by the Paris Court of Appeal.

Olivier Chicheportiche Journalist BFM Business

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