The Role of Companions at Disciplinary and Grievance Hearings

Under the Employment Relations Act 1999 a worker has the right to be accompanied by a fellow worker or trade union representative at an internal disciplinary or grievance procedure hearing, provided the request is reasonable in the circumstances. A worker also has the right not to be subjected to any detriment because they have exercised,… Read more »

Social Housing Company Not Guilty of Age Discrimination

In the context of a redundancy process, in which workers competed with one another in order to obtain one of the remaining posts, it was reasonable for the employer to expect each of them to look after their own interests. An Employment Tribunal (ET) so ruled in clearing a social housing company of age discrimination… Read more »

When Does Notice of Termination Take Effect?

Exactly when notice of termination takes effect can impact on an employee’s entitlement to certain benefits or employment rights. In a recent case, the Court of Appeal ruled that, in the absence of an express term in the employee’s contract, notice of termination takes effect when the employee actually receives it in person (Newcastle upon… Read more »

Whistleblowing and the Meaning of ‘In the Public Interest’

The Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998 – often referred to as the ‘Whistleblowing’ Act – inserted provisions into the Employment Rights Act 1996 (ERA) in order to protect employees from unfair treatment for reasonably raising, in a responsible way, genuine concerns about wrongdoing in the workplace. The Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013 made certain… Read more »

‘Good Work’ – The Taylor Review

In October 2016, the Prime Minister commissioned Matthew Taylor, a former policy chief to Tony Blair, to look at how employment practices need to change in order to keep pace with modern business needs. The Review, entitled ‘Good Work’, has now been published and makes many recommendations. These focus broadly on three challenges: Tackling exploitation… Read more »

Supreme Court Rules on the Pension Rights of Gay Partners

The Supreme Court has handed down a ruling which means that all married gay couples and civil partners should receive equal pension rights. Under Paragraph 18 of Schedule 9 of the Equality Act 2010, employers and pension funds are permitted to exclude civil partners from spousal benefits under a pension scheme the rights to which… Read more »

Supreme Court Clarifies Law on Indirect Discrimination

The Supreme Court has now handed down its judgment in an important case, Essop and Others v Home Office (UK Border Agency), brought by a group of workers who claimed to have suffered indirect race and/or age discrimination. The Court has ruled that in order to succeed in an indirect discrimination claim, it is not… Read more »

Early Conciliation and Second Certificates

For Employment Tribunal (ET) claims lodged on or after 6 May 2014, it is a legal requirement, unless an exemption applies, for the claimant to first notify the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas) by completing an Early Conciliation (EC) notification form. ET claims will not be accepted unless this procedure has been followed and… Read more »

Mother Suffered Discrimination After Part-Time Return From Maternity Leave

The Equality Act 2010 makes it unlawful to discriminate against or treat a woman unfavourably because of her pregnancy, or because she has given birth recently, is breastfeeding or is on maternity leave. In addition, the Employment Rights Act 1996 and the Maternity and Parental Leave etc. Regulations 1999 protect employees from unfair dismissal and… Read more »