'I was dismissed yesterday after my salary was given to me," writes G.B. "The manager told me that by using a lot of paid leave last month, I had disrupted the workplace and demonstrated my lack of ability to do the job, so they had to discharge me.

"However, I only took seven days' paid leave to go back to my home country. I think I had around 10 days' paid leave, since I had worked for this company for one year and three months as of yesterday. I want to make the company withdraw my dismissal or get compensation from them. What options do I have?"

You should bear in mind that there are strict requirements regarding employee dismissal in Japan, as defined in the Labor Contract Law and clarified in subsequent rulings by the Supreme Court. These requirements have proven to be a formidable hurdle for companies seeking to dismiss employees. The bottom line, though, is that your dismissal would be invalid if it is not based on reasonable grounds.