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27 July 2015 0 Comments Posted in Employment, Opinion

Scope of statutory collective bargaining

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In British Airline Pilots Association v Jet2.com Limited the High Court has commented on the scope of statutory collective bargaining.

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Travel time – Advocate General opinion that this counts as working time

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In what may potentially be an important and far reaching decision for UK employers, the Advocate General has given his opinion on whether or not travel time counts as working time for the purposes of the EU Working Time Directive in relation to peripatetic workers.

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26 June 2015 0 Comments Posted in Employment, Opinion

If I knew you were coming I’d have backed a cake…

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In a case which has engendered considerable publicity, the County Court for Northern Ireland has delivered Judgment on whether or not there had been breaches of the Equality Act (Sexual Orientation) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2006 and article 3 of the Fair Employment and Treatment (Northern Ireland) Order 1998 in the case of Lee v Ashers Bakery Co Ltd and others.

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Claim can be brought 6 years out of time

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In quite a surprising EAT decision, Higgins v Home Office and another held that a Tribunal did not have proper grounds to reject a claim which had been lodged 6 years out of time. The EAT considered that the Tribunal …

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More cases on collective consultation

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Following the ECJ decision in the Woolworths case, the ECJ has handed down two further Judgments dealing with collective consultation.

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Risk of public belief did not justify anonymity

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In BBC v Roden the EAT has overturned a Tribunal decision which took into account the risk of public belief in the truth of unproven allegations of sexual harassment in an unfair dismissal claim in its decision extend an anonymity order. The EAT held that the public interest in open justice in such a case outweighed the individual’s right to a private life and that the anonymity order should not have been made.

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Establishment of discrimination – motivation of decision making

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CLFIS (UK) Limited v Reynolds, concerned consideration of the thought processes of those involved in the decision to dismiss an individual.

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Fee can only be awarded if Appellant has actually paid it

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This decision considers the ability of the EAT to order that the successful Appellant has its fees paid by the Respondent. Goldwater and others v Sellafield Limited considered the wording of the relevant EAT rule in respect of the facility to order that fees be repaid to an Appellant by a Respondent where the Appellant’s appeal is successful. It is held that where the fee is in fact paid by the Trade Union, the EAT has no power to order that the Respondent pay the fee because the wording of the Rule specifically provides that the fee must have been paid by the Appellants themselves and not on their behalf. Worth noting if acting for Respondents where the Appellants are represented by Unions – check whether the Unions or the Appellants have actually paid the fee and hope it’s the Unions!

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Court of Appeal guidance on what constitutes a detriment

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In Deer v University of Oxford the Court of Appeal has held that how an employer handles the grievance of an ex employee can amount to a detriment for the purpose of the individual’s claim for victimisation even though the grievance itself was never going to be upheld. The fact that the outcome of the grievance would not have changed regardless of how it was handled was relevant to compensation but did not, of itself, defeat the victimisation claim and a Tribunal was wrong to strike the claim out purely on the basis that the grievance was unfounded.

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21 May 2015 0 Comments Posted in Employment, Opinion

Ticking fee remission box sufficient to apply for remission

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This case concerns the application for remission of fees when submitting an Employment Tribunal claim online. Deangate Limited v Hatley and others is an EAT case which upheld an Employment Tribunal decision that claims which were presented online were within time even though the fee remission applications were received by the Tribunal after the limitation date had expired. The Employment Tribunal online portal does not currently allow for a fee remission application to be made online but the Claimant must either pay the fee or tick a box indicating that they intend to apply for a fee remission. In these circumstances the EAT held that a claim which is presented online is accompanied by a remission application for the purposes of the rules if the Claimant ticks the box saying that he or she is going to apply for remission of fees. To do otherwise would lead to what they described as the “unhappy consequence” that only Claimants who could afford to pay the fee would be able to present a claim online.

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Public interest test for whistleblower protection

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In the first appellate decision on the public interest test which was inserted into the whistleblowing provisions of the Employment Rights Act 1996 in June 2013, Chesterton Global Limited and another v Nurmohamed is an EAT decision on what can pass the public interest test. Despite the employee’s motivation for making the disclosure being the effect on his and other managers’ commission payments, the manipulation by the company of profit and loss figures was held to pass the public interest test.

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Costs award appropriate despite inability to pay

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In Chadburn v Doncaster and Bassetlaw Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and another, the EAT has upheld a Tribunal decision to award £10,000 of costs in favour of the Respondent against a Claimant who invented discrimination allegations to beef up her unfair dismissal claim. The factors taken into account in this decision make interesting reading.

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