While labour law has evolved to remedy the deficiencies in the common law, Malcolm Wallis argues, the common law is not as deficient as some believe; rather, common-law principles are often misapplied or misunderstood. There is a synthesis between the common law and labour legislation.

The legislature has recognised that a contractual relationship lies at the heart of employment, and the common law of summary dismissal is part of the law of dismissal. The author goes on to observe that, no matter to what extent labour law is derived from statute, the common law will always be present as the repository of principles applicable to statutory interpretation.

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