Stealing company property is the most common reason why Dutch bosses sack workers on the spot, the Volkskrant said on Tuesday.
In total, 18% of the 194 published court cases about instant dismissal in the previous 12 months revolve around theft, the paper said.
Fraud and conflicts about reintegrating workers who have been off sick each account for 12% of instant dismissal cases.
One case referred to by the paper is that of a cleaner at the Action budget retail group, a cleaner and a garage worker who were fired for stealing a packet of crisps, a packet of biscuits and a car part. Other cases are more serious, such as that of the man who stole €55,000 from a healthcare institution.
In Dutch employment law, a worker must have been involved in a serious crime to be sacked on the spot. However, instant dismissal is regularily used as the starting point for negotiations and often never reaches court, labour lawyer Henriette van Baalen told the paper.
‘Instant dismissal is a form of pressure used in negotiations,’ she said.