Morgan Russell Solicitors

Employment

Employment Law News - March 2014

  1. “Too much too soon”  - High Court’s decision re Unison’s challenge to Employment Tribunal fees
  2. Re-engagement after TUPE transfers
  3. “I don’t want to talk about it”  - Introduction of compulsory early ACAS conciliation
  4. “Just don’t ask me any questions” - The abolition of statutory discrimination questionnaires from 06 April 2014
  5. “Steady with those rash promises…”  - A current case that illustrates the dangers of issuing rash assurances about benefits that may accrue many years hence
  6. “Street fighting man” – This recent case looks at the question of vicarious liability for employers
  7. “Use it or lose it” – A recent case looking at implied terms in an employment contract
  8. “That's the limit” – Annual change to Tribunal compensation limits
  9. And finally… previously on “United States of America v Nolan”  -  Further update on this case

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Continue reading Employment Law News - March 2014

“Too much too soon” - High Court’s decision re Unison’s challenge to Employment Tribunal fees

The first of our news items for the last month is the rejection by the High Court of Unison’s challenge to employment tribunal fees in Unison, R (on the application of) v The Lord Chancellor & Anor. Put simply, the overall outcome was that the Court considered that it was too soon to tell what the impact of the introduction of fees would be and so the case had been brought prematurely.

Continue reading “Too much too soon” - High Court’s decision re Unison’s challenge to Employment Tribunal fees

Re-engagement after TUPE transfers

Two questions were considered by the EAT in Hazel & Anor v The Manchester College – whether it was automatically unfair to dismiss transferred employees who accepted jobs on new terms under protest after transfer, and whether, having found that it was, an ET could order that they be re-engaged on the old terms by way of remedy.

Continue reading Re-engagement after TUPE transfers

“I don’t want to talk about it” - Introduction of compulsory early ACAS conciliation

The Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013 (Commencement No.5, Transitional Provisions and Savings) Order 2014 (SI 2014/253) brings into force, from 6 April 2014, compulsory early Acas conciliation. The Early Conciliation Rules of Procedure are set out in the Employment Tribunals (Early Conciliation: Exemptions and Rules of Procedure) Regulations.

Continue reading “I don’t want to talk about it” - Introduction of compulsory early ACAS conciliation

“Just don’t ask me any questions” - The abolition of statutory discrimination questionnaires from 06 April 2014

Section 66 of the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act will repeal the statutory discrimination questionnaire procedure from 6 April 2014 and in advance of this, Acas has published guidance about asking and responding to questions relating to workplace discrimination after the abolition of the statutory procedure. The guidance is non statutory and is not binding on tribunals. Together with tips on how to ask and respond to questions, the guidance sets out a template to help organise them.

Continue reading “Just don’t ask me any questions” - The abolition of statutory discrimination questionnaires from 06 April 2014

“Steady with those rash promises…” – A current case that illustrates the dangers of issuing rash assurances about benefits that may accrue many years hence

British Telecommunications plc v Luck is an interesting case as it addresses the tortious liability of an employer in relation to negligent or fraudulent misrepresentation. The essence of this case was that as part of the process of a TUPE transfer, staff at BT were assured that their participation in the BT pension scheme would be unaffected by the transfer. What in fact happened was that BT sold its shareholding in the transferee company in which had entered into a joint venture and the transferred staff’s membership of the scheme ceased. The alternative scheme offered less generous benefits and the employees brought a claim for misrepresentation.

Continue reading “Steady with those rash promises…” – A current case that illustrates the dangers of issuing rash assurances about benefits that may accrue many years hence

“Street fighting man” - This recent case looks at the question of vicarious liability for employers

The question of vicarious liability for employers can sometimes arise in unexpected ways. In Mohamud v Wm Morrison Supermarkets Plc an unfortunate shopper at the Morrisons convenience store on a petrol station forecourt was subjected to verbal abuse inside the store from an employee who then followed him outside and violently punched and kicked him.

Continue reading “Street fighting man” - This recent case looks at the question of vicarious liability for employers

“Use it or lose it” - A recent case looking at implied terms in an employment contract

The outcome of Vision Events (UK) Ltd v Paterson was, to say the least, harsh on the claimant, Mr Paterson. He worked as a multimedia producer on a flexi time basis. He enjoyed his job. He did not take all the time off he could have. When he asked to take a block of flexi time off in one go to make a trip to New Zealand, his employer refused to let him. He built up over 1000 hours owing to him, at which point he was (fairly) selected for redundancy. Unsurprisingly, he looked for payment for those hours, but his employer maintained that they had no obligation to pay him at all - there was nothing in his contract saying they had to. And so he successfully made a claim for unlawful deductions from wages in the ET. The employer appealed.

Continue reading “Use it or lose it” - A recent case looking at implied terms in an employment contract

“That's the limit” - Annual change to Tribunal compensation limits

In a little heralded employment law development, the date for the annual change to tribunal compensation limits has shifted from February to April each year, and the SI announcing the new limits is out: the Employment Rights (Increase of Limits) Order 2014.

From 6 April 2014 the new maximum compensatory award for unfair dismissal increases to £76,574 from £74,200. The new maximum week's pay, used for calculating redundancy payments and basic unfair dismissal awards, increases from £450 to £464.

And finally… previously on “United States of America v Nolan” – Further update on this case

The long saga of The United States of America v Nolan is drawing to a close. Fans of the series will recall that Mrs Nolan complained that when the USA decided to close its watercraft repair facility in Hampshire, they did not carry out any consultation before doing so and making around 200 civilian employees redundant.

Continue reading And finally… previously on “United States of America v Nolan” – Further update on this case
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