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Aug
24
2018

Zero hours, zero protection, zero remedy?
#Employment

As we blogged in June, individuals on zero hours contracts can bring claims for less favourable treatment of part-time workers by comparing to compare themselves to full-time workers even though they have different kinds of contracts. More recently, the Employment Appeal Tribunal (“EAT”) Judgment in Rice Shack Ltd v Obi was published....

Aug
23
2018

Refusal to postpone disciplinary hearing when companion not available was unfair
#Employment

In Talon Engineering Ltd v Smith, the Employment Appeal Tribunal (the ‘EAT’) held that an employer’s refusal to postpone a disciplinary hearing for two weeks to enable the Claimant’s union official to accompany her rendered the subsequent dismissal unfair. In this case, the Claimant faced disciplinary action for sending unprofessional emails....

Aug
16
2018

Five month break in activities did not prevent a TUPE transfer
#Employment

In this recent case, the management of a school in Spain was sub-contracted out by the local authority. In the midst of a dispute the contractor dismissed all of the school’s staff on 27 March 2013. ...

Aug
16
2018

Legal Privilege may not apply to advice to “Cloak Discrimination”
#Employment

As a general rule, a lawyer’s advice to their client is legally privileged. However, there is an exception to this, known as the iniquity exception, which applies when advice is given for the purpose of furthering a criminal or fraudulent design. ...

Aug
10
2018

An employment tribunal was wrong to limit a claim to ‘the top 10’ allegations
#Employment

Many employers will be familiar with the difficulties which arise when an employee alleges numerous legal breaches, citing large numbers of incidents.In the case of Tarn v Hughes & Ors, a GP claimed pregnancy and maternity discrimination, alleging 46 legal breaches of three different kinds. The tribunal was asked to decide 180 issues....

Aug
10
2018

Respondent barred from liability hearing may still participate in remedy hearing
#Employment

The Court of Appeal held in Office Equipment Systems v Hughes that even where a party is debarred from contesting liability at a hearing, they should normally be permitted to contest remedy....

Aug
03
2018

Employers’ duty of care to employees does not extend to the conduct of litigation
#Employment

The Supreme Court recently held that employers sued on the basis of vicarious liability for acts of their employees do not owe those employees a duty to defend the proceedings in a manner that protects the employees’ own economic or reputational interests. In James-Bowen & Ors v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis, a terrorist suspect alleged that he had been seriously assaulted in the course of his arrest and brought a personal injury claim against the Police Commissioner for vicariously liability for the police officers’ actions....

Aug
03
2018

No extra time where notice of appeal lost in the post
#Employment

In Haydar v Pennine Acute NHS Trust, the Claimant had brought claims against his employer which included unfair dismissal and discrimination. His claim for discrimination was dismissed and, although, the unfair dismissal claim was upheld a finding of contributory fault was made. The claimant alleged that he sent an appeal against this judgment to the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) prior to the relevant deadline, however, there was no record of this being received by the EAT. ...

Jul
27
2018

Strike action could not go ahead despite a majority of votes in favour
#Employment

Before a strike can be lawful, unions have to hold a secret postal ballot of the union members who could take part. Earlier this year, the government offered civil servants a pay increase of 1%....

Jul
27
2018

Caste is not going to become a protected characteristic
#Employment

Following a consultation progress, the government has decided that specific legal protection against caste-based discrimination is not required. It says that it has not been able to identify a legally workable definition of caste and that it would be difficult to differentiate between caste and social class....

Jul
27
2018

Court of Appeal confirms employer vicariously liable for acts of its contractor
#Employment

In Barclays Bank v Various Claimants, the Court of Appeal has upheld a High Court’s decision that the bank was vicariously liable for the deliberate criminal assaults of a contractor on its employees. The case concerned historical sexual assaults of a doctor (who was an independent contractor of the bank) on female bank employees when conducting medical examinations on behalf of the bank. ...

Jul
25
2018

Could technology be the answer to boost employee wellbeing?
#Information Technology #Employment

Technology’s impact in the workplace is unquestionable- the increased use of remote working, mobile devices and new technologies in the workplace all designed to improve employee and company performance is clear for all to see. However, the debate continues on whether this impact is positive or negative on employees’ wellbeing. ...

Jul
20
2018

Philosophical belief: one in the bag for Mulberry
#Employment

The Employment Appeal Tribunal has recently found that a belief held by only one person, cannot give rise to an indirect discrimination claim on the ground of philosophical belief. The claimant worked for Mulberry as a Market Support Assistant: a role which gave her access to some of Mulberry’s designs ahead of their launch to market. ...

Jul
18
2018

Successful appeal erases dismissal
#Employment

In the recent case of Patel v Folkstone Nursing Home Ltd, the Court of Appeal held that an employee had not been dismissed by his employer as his internal appeal against dismissal had been successful; thereby effectively erasing the earlier dismissal. The claimant had been dismissed for gross misconduct for falsifying records and sleeping whilst on duty. ...

Jul
16
2018

Michael Hibberd comments for Elite Businesses on Uber – ‘Above the Law?’
#Employment #Information Technology #Press

Uber had its brakes slammed on last September after Transport for London (TFL) revoked its five-year licence for failure to report crime and to properly background check its drivers....

Jul
13
2018

Recurring holiday dreams?
#Employment

In Flowers v East of England Ambulance Trust, The Employment Appeal Tribunal has confirmed that voluntary overtime should be included when calculating holiday pay, if it is paid over a sufficient period of time. The ambulance crew members in this case did both mandatory but non-guaranteed overtime (shift over-run) and voluntary overtime, both of which were irregular. However, the voluntary overtime was not included in their holiday pay calculations. ...

Jul
13
2018

Discrimination arising from disability: Any treatment must be proportionate
#Employment

In Ali v Torrosian and others (t/a Bedford Hill Family Practice) the EAT confirmed that when determining a claim for unfavourable treatment arising in consequence of a disability, Tribunals must consider whether the employer’s pursued legitimate aim could be achieved by less discriminatory means. Discrimination arising from disability (“unfavourable treatment”) was a new ground of claim created under the Equality Act 2010. ...

Jul
06
2018

Right to work check: Failure to give right of appeal following dismissal, found to be unfair
#Employment #UK Immigration

As we have previously blogged, if an employee fails to produce evidence of his right to work in the UK, it will not necessarily be fair for an employer to dismiss on the basis that it would be illegal to continue to employ the employee. However, dismissal in these circumstances can still be fair if the employer has a reasonable and genuinely held belief that it would be illegal to continue to employ them and has followed a fair process....

Jul
06
2018

Qualifying period for Unfair Dismissal Claims
#Employment

If an employee is dismissed for gross misconduct just short of 2 years service, s/he cannot add on statutory minimum notice so as to qualify to bring an unfair dismissal claim, found the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) in Lancaster & Duke Limited v Wileman....

Jun
29
2018

Tribunal delivers further win for gig economy workers
#Employment

In a recent ruling by the Employment Tribunal, Hermes couriers have been deemed to be workers. This is the latest in a long line of decisions about the gig economy, including Pimlico Plumbers, Uber, Citysprint and Deliveroo, in which the general trend has been that those working in the gig economy have been found to have greater rights than the company may have envisaged....

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