How should employers deal with employees who are late for work due to having stayed up to watch a World Cup match the night before?

Where an employee is late for work because he or she stayed up to watch a late World Cup match the previous night, but this is a one-off occurrence, the employer may choose to overlook the incident or give the employee an informal warning, unless there are consequences for the employer (for example a deadline is missed or a client relationship is damaged).

An informal warning will usually be sufficient to address poor timekeeping. However, if an employee's late arrival for work becomes a regular occurrence, the employer should deal with the situation under its attendance/absence policy. In some cases, it will be appropriate for the employer to instigate the disciplinary procedure. Clearly, employers should deal with persistent lateness, whether for a reason connected with the World Cup or for any other reason, consistently, to help to avoid allegations of unfair or discriminatory treatment.