Can a resignation be rescinded or revoked??
“In Ngo, the Full Bench held that where a resignation had taken place, it could only be retracted by speedy action.
“The next point is whether Mr Ngo was entitled to withdraw his resignation. The relevant law was the subject of extensive consideration by Gray J in Birrell v Australian National Airlines Commission(referred to in paragraph ). The conclusion to be drawn from that case is, we think, clears – a unilateral withdrawal of a notice of termination of a contract of employment is not possible (p.110). There was some suggestion by the appellant that Birrell has been overtaken by later cases. We do not agree; Birrell was applied by the Federal Court in 1993 in Saddington v Building Workers Industrial Union [(1993) 49 IR 323 at 336], by the Commission in the same year in Ampol Ltd v Transport Workers Union of Australia [(1993) 54 IR 134 at 138] and in 1995 by Ryan J as a member of the Industrial Relations Court inFryar v Systems Services Pty Ltd [(1995) 60 IR 68 at 87-88].
In Birrell, Gray J referred to Martin v Yeoman Aggregates Ltd  ICR 314, a decision of the Employment Appeal Tribunal (UK), in which it was held that words of dismissal spoken in the heat of the moment were ineffective if withdrawn immediately the heat had died down. Gray J said that he regarded this decision as confined to its facts and therefore as not extending beyond permitting the withdrawal of words uttered in the heat of the moment, when those words are retracted swiftly (pp.110-111).
I am not satisfied that the Applicant was dismissed by the Respondent. It is likely that the Applicant did not clearly resign but inferred that he was “finished”. The fact that this was not further acted on or attempted to be clarified until five days later confirms that he had resigned. I do not accept that the Applicant had no real choice but to do what he did.”
Tomlinson v Ballina Furniture Overnighters T/A Ballina Removals & Storage (2016) FWC 2451 delivered 20 April 2016 per Lawrence DP