Tag Archives: Employment (UK)

Holiday Pay: the latest instalment

As we start the summer holidays, the Supreme Court’s judgment on holiday pay is a timely reminder of the complexities of calculating holiday pay for certain workers. Holiday pay has been a hot topic in UK employment law over recent years, with the latest Supreme Court decision in Harpur Trust v Brazel addressing the calculation … Continue Reading

Unfair Dismissal Compensatory Awards – The Cost of Compliance

The recent case of Dafiaghor-Olomu v Community Integrated Care [2022] EAT 84 is a good demonstration of the rough justice that is occasionally dispensed by the Employment Tribunal system. It is well known that the amount of compensation that an employer can be ordered to pay for a straightforward unfair dismissal claim is subject to … Continue Reading

Sailing close to the wind: ‘without prejudice’ and the thresholds of ‘unambiguous impropriety’

The outcome of Swiss Re Corporate Solutions v Sommer [2022] EAT 78, (which we reported in this month’s newsletter) provides an interesting illustration of the scope of the ‘without prejudice’ privilege rules in the context of settling an employment tribunal claim. The ‘without prejudice’ rule (the “Rule”) allows parties to have a full and frank … Continue Reading

Strikes and cancellations: The impact of travel chaos on employers

With train strikes scheduled for next week, and flight cancellations now a regular occurrence, UK workers seem set for a summer of travel disruption. This blog explores the implication for employers, particularly where workers may be stuck abroad, or otherwise unable to get to their place of work. Flight cancellations After two years of restricted … Continue Reading

Queen’s Speech 2022: What next for UK Employment Law?

The Queen’s Speech at the State Opening of Parliament sets out the UK government’s legislative agenda for the year ahead. This year’s speech took place on 10 May, and in addition to the Queen’s absence, there was notable absence of any employment law reform. In particular, the long-awaited Employment Bill, which was included in the … Continue Reading

Covid-19 related refusal to attend the workplace

Covid-19 related reluctance or refusal to attend the workplace is nothing new, but as we enter a new phase of the pandemic, ‘Living with Covid’, developing case law will be of interest to employers who require or expect workers to attend the workplace on a full or hybrid basis. This blog considers the current guidance … Continue Reading

Supreme Court decision announced in Pimlico Plumbers case

The Supreme Court has delivered its ruling on the landmark Pimlico Plumbers case, upholding previous decisions that an ostensibly ‘self employed’ plumber was in fact properly classified as a ‘worker’ with valuable employment rights under UK law (including discrimination protection and holiday pay). The case has been closely monitored because of its impact on organisations engaging large numbers … Continue Reading

New rules on whistleblowing for UK financial institutions

The FCA and PRA have announced a new package of rules aimed at formalising whistleblowing procedures within certain financial institutions. The rules will be implemented on 7 September 2016; however firms covered by the new regime must comply with the requirement to appoint a ‘whistleblowers’ champion’ by the earlier date of 7 March 2016. Background … Continue Reading

Should voluntary overtime be included when calculating holiday pay?

Another decision has been handed down to clarify – or complicate – the position on which aspects of pay should be included when calculating an employee’s entitlement to holiday pay. The Court of Appeal in Northern Ireland (“CA”) has held that voluntary overtime is not necessarily excluded from the calculation of holiday pay for the … Continue Reading

UK Government reveals new legislative programme – Implications for employment law

Following the unexpected victory by the Conservatives in the UK general election on 7 May, the Government has announced its programme for the next session of Parliament. Amongst its proposals, the Government is proposing new laws regulating the ability to take lawful strike action. The new proposals will require a 50% voter turnout threshold in … Continue Reading

European Court clarifies when collective redundancy consultation obligations apply

The Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) has today given its decision in the case of USDAW and others – v – Ethel Austin and others, otherwise known as the Woolworths case. The CJEU has decided that, in determining whether collective redundancy consultation obligations are triggered, an employer need only consider proposed redundancies … Continue Reading

The general election – implications for employment law

With just three weeks to go until the general election, and the main parties having now published their manifestos, what is the future looking like for employment law? The Conservatives have indicated their support for real terms increases in the National Minimum Wage, rising from its current level of £6.50 per hour to reach £8 … Continue Reading

UK Update – Whistleblowing: When is a disclosure made in the public interest?

In Chestertons –v– Nurmohamed, the Employment Appeal Tribunal has given the first appellate guidance on when a worker’s disclosure is made in the public interest, so as to attract whistleblower protection. Changes to Whistleblowing legislation In July 2013, the whistleblower legislation was changed to require a worker making a disclosure to have a reasonable belief … Continue Reading

Sickness absence management – employee rights, risks and recommendations

This post was also written by Martin Gätzner. France Under French law, the employment contract of an employee who is on sick leave is suspended. The employee is expected to inform his or her employer and the relevant social security organisations of the sickness absence within 48 hours, and will be entitled to receive social security … Continue Reading

Lock v British Gas – eagerly awaited holiday pay Judgment now handed down

The recent line of holiday pay cases has led to widespread media coverage suggesting some employers’ payroll costs are due to soar. Businesses have therefore been eagerly awaiting the Employment Tribunal’s decision in Lock v British Gas, which has now been handed down on the question of whether commission structures will impact holiday pay. In … Continue Reading

UK update – Type 2 diabetes controlled by diet is not automatically a disability

This post was written by David Ashmore and Amy Treppass. In Metroline Travel v Stoute, the Employment Appeal Tribunal (“EAT”) decided that employees with type 2 diabetes controlled by diet (rather than medication) are not automatically protected by disability discrimination legislation. The Facts Mr Stoute was employed by Metroline and worked for them as a … Continue Reading

Employment Appeal Tribunal gives guidance on what constitutes sufficient knowledge of a disability to give rise to a duty to make reasonable adjustments

In Donelien v Liberata, the Employment Appeal Tribunal (“EAT”) has held that an employer did not have constructive knowledge of an employee’s disability, even though further steps could have been taken to investigate her condition. Background Under the Equality Act 2010, employers are obliged to make reasonable adjustments to help disabled employees overcome disadvantages arising … Continue Reading

Newsflash: New ACAS Code Now In Force

ACAS has issued a new Code of Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures, which came into force last Wednesday (11 March 2015). The new Code has been issued due to uncertainty regarding workers’ statutory rights to be accompanied by a trade union representative or fellow worker at disciplinary and grievance hearings, following the EAT decision … Continue Reading

UK update – TUPE service provision changes become more complex with the potential involvement of multiple clients and contracts

In Ottimo Property Services Ltd -v- Duncan and another, the Employment Appeal Tribunal has decided that, where several different clients change service provider at or around the same time, each individual service provision change can be considered together to decide how TUPE applies. The facts Mr Duncan worked as a site maintenance engineer at a … Continue Reading

Contractual flexibility clauses must be clear and unambiguous to give an employer a right to make unilateral changes

In the case of Norman and others v National Audit Office UKEAT/0276/14, the Employment Appeal Tribunal (“EAT”) confirmed that flexibility clauses in employment contracts which seek to give employers the right to make unilateral changes to the contract’s terms will be interpreted restrictively against employers. In reaching its decision, the EAT overturned an Employment Tribunal’s … Continue Reading

Whistleblower Protection Around the World

This post was also written by Claudia Röthlingshöfer. Welcome to Reed Smith’s monthly global employment law blog post. This month’s post covers the protection afforded to whistleblowers around the world. France Under French law, employees cannot be sanctioned, dismissed or be subject to direct or indirect discriminatory measures (especially concerning salary, training, reclassification or appointment) for reporting … Continue Reading

What is an ‘establishment’ for collective redundancy consultation purposes?

The Advocate General has given a preliminary opinion in the case of USDAW & Wilson v Woolworths and others (“the Woolworths case”) on the question of whether there is a requirement to aggregate the number of employees across different locations to meet the thresholds for collective consultation obligations (in England and Wales, of 20 employees … Continue Reading

An Introduction to Global Reductions in Force – Reed Smith To Present Teleseminar on January 29

Reductions in force – also known as collective redundancies – can be daunting for employers, both in dealing with employee issues and protecting the company from liability. On Thursday, 29 January 2015, my partners and I will present a primer on what employers need to know about redundancies in four key jurisdictions: the UK, France, … Continue Reading
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