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Appeal court slashes payout to sacked Willis GM

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The NSW Court of Appeal has slashed a payout awarded to former Willis GM Donald Mitchell-Innes, who was dismissed in November 2012 for turning up hungover to a work conference in Melbourne.

Mr Mitchell-Innes will be awarded almost $90,000, instead of $296,650.

The three-judge panel took the view that “serious misconduct did not occur in the ‘serious circumstances’ to which the contract of employment referred”.

According to court documents, Mr Mitchell-Innes “was not at his best” during the training conference in October 2012.

He had spent the previous night drinking and fell asleep on a bench near the hotel lifts when he could not find his room keys.

He was sacked after an investigation by Willis’ Australia and New Zealand human resources director.