Making the decision to dismiss an employee is challenging for every manager on each occasion the issue is contemplated. UK law gives employees right to compensation if they are dismissed contrary to statutory rules. It has become common practice and the expectation of both employers and employees to manage departures and the risks associated with them by entering into severance agreements for departing employees where in return for negotiated additional sums the employee gives an effective waiver of all claims. These are known as compromise agreements and to be effective they are required to be in a particular format and the employee must have legal counsel. This short note walks through basic dismissal best practice and explains how to retain the upper hand in negotiation of any compromise agreement.