Is it illegal to have sex at work and can it get you fired? – The Sun | The Sun

WITH longer working hours, romantic relationships in the workplace have inevitably increased.

For some, it can be highly tempting to be intimate in the workplace, but could you get fired as a result? Read on to find out.

Is it illegal to have sex in the office?

Good news! For most people, having sex in the office is not illegal.

Now before you all start making plans, you could be disciplined by your boss for gross misconduct.

Being found guilty of gross misconduct is grounds for immediate dismissal in some workplaces.

For those of you who work in public offices, such as the civil service, police or NHS, you could be prosecuted for a breach of the public's trust for having sex while on duty.

In 2005 two police officers received jail time of 15 months for having sex with a woman while on duty.

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They were also forced to quit their jobs.

There are many examples where people are disciplined and others who are not.

David Minns, of, er, respected pollsters, said: “A common theme is people enjoy the thrill of having sex while they’re meant to be ­working.

“The thing most respondents agreed on was that having sex in the office had the added excitement of getting caught.”

Can you be fired for having sex in the office?

It is always best practice to be well aware of the policies your company has in place regarding relationships in the office.

For most, if you're employed by a private company, your employer normally cannot ban office romances.

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However, they are well within their rights to expect a certain standard of behaviour from all their employees regarding appropriate and inappropriate conduct on company time, according to the TUC.

Having sex in the workplace could be viewed as gross misconduct – and therefore grounds for firing someone.

Sally Laughton, an employment solicitor at Andersons Solicitors in Nottingham, told The Guardian: "Whether your behaviour justifies instant dismissal would depend on the circumstances.

"Holding hands or briefly kissing may be seen as inappropriate but won't justify dismissal, whereas more explicit behaviour might."

But there isn't a clear-cut rule on sex in the workplace.

Employment lawyer Lauren Hillier, of Slater and Gordon, cited a case where a couple were fired for having sex on their boss' desk.

They took the case to the Employment Appeals Tribunal, where the original judge ruled that the decision to sack them was unfair, and awarded the couple damages for their case.

The employer then appealed the outcome – and a second judge ruled that the dismissals were fair after all.

She explained: "A key point in their reasoning was that not only had the employees been having sex, but they had also been making rude comments about their boss while doing so.

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"So the moral of the story seems to be that you might get away with having sex at work (after hours, of course, not when you’re supposed to be working), but if you do it on the boss’s desk or are otherwise disrespectful to your employer, then you’re really in trouble."

So before you have sex at work, make sure you can take into consideration these risks as it can get you in trouble.

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