A New South Wales father has been awarded $276,000 (NZ$296,769) after being unlawfully terminated for allowing his son to eat some leftover pizza he bought with his company card.
The Sydney Toyota worker, who was a manager for two decades, was fired one day before qualifying for a $379,268 (NZ$407,680) redundancy payout.
Greg Sherry lost his job in 2018 for "serious misconduct" with his employer saying he "dishonestly and in breach of the relevant policies, incurred personal expenses on his corporate credit card in the sum of $1754.50 (NZ$1885.93)" during a business trip.
Sherry said his manager permitted him to bring his wife and two children on the trip to Melbourne as long as he personally paid for his family's food, flights and meals. He told the court he was allowed to use his corporate card to pay for his own flight and the joint accommodation and food.
During the trip, Sherry bought a $32.50 (NZ34.93) pizza for himself but was unable to finish it and let his son eat a leftover slice or two.
This landed him in hot water with his employer, who claimed he broke the company's rules by buying a "meal for his son". Toyota also alleged that he booked a bigger room than necessary and stayed an extra night for "personal" reasons.
But Sherry told the court prices were higher because the trip coincided with the Australian Open and he only stayed an extra night because he thought he would miss Sydney Airport's cut-off curfew.
In 2019, Sherry launched legal action against the company seeking $301,000 (NZ323,548) in damages after being paid $80,521 (NZ86,553) in redundancy pay.
The District Court of NSW found Sherry didn't act dishonestly and awarded him the mammoth payout.