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17 March 2015 0 Comments
Posted in Employment, Opinion

Changes to terms and conditions were not age discriminatory

Author headshot image Posted by , Partner

In Braithwaite and others v HCL Insurance BPO Services Limited and another, the EAT has upheld a Tribunal decision that an employer imposing new terms and conditions was not unjustified indirect age discrimination. The employer required its employees to agree to the new terms and conditions or be dismissed. This was a provision, criterion or practice that put employees in the age group of 38 to 64 at a particular disadvantage because their longer service meant they had accrued greater entitlements. However as there was no practical alternative open to the employer, the disadvantage was justified as a proportionate means of achieving the employer’s aim of reducing staff costs to ensure its continued existence and having in place a market competitive, non-discriminatory set of terms and conditions. The Tribunal had properly considered the options available to the employer and concluded that these would not achieve the cost savings required – it had also conducted the balancing effect of the employer’s needs weighed against the discriminatory effect on the employees.

This legal update is provided for general information purposes only and should not be applied to specific circumstances without prior consultation with us.

For further details on any of the issues covered in this update please contact Gemma Ospedale, Partner in Employment on 020 7583 2222.

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