Employment Tribunal rules in favour of sacked Austin Reed workers

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Manchester Employment Tribunal has awarded a 90-day protective award to ex-employees against the two Austin Reed companies, AR Realisations 2016 Limited and ARG Realisations 2016 Limited. This follows a failure by the companies to properly inform and consult employees in their main offices at Thirsk and London in the lead up to the companies’ insolvency in April 2016. The insolvencies … Read More

Employment Rights Update

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New Appointment Hannah Boynes has joined the Morrish employment team. Hannah qualified in 2012 and obtained Higher Rights of Audience in 2014. Hannah qualified as a Solicitor-Advocate after completing her training in civil litigation and employment.     British Airline Pilots’ Association v Jet2.com Ltd 2017 This case looked into what falls within the scope of “pay, hours and holidays” in terms … Read More

WNG Group employees have a right to justice

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We are offering assistance to employees of WNG Group (trading as Wachem, I Love Products and Sutton Manufacturing Solutions), as a result of the organisation’s recent administration announcement. East Yorkshire-based WNG Group, manufacturer and retailer of personal hygiene products, ceased trading upon the joint administrators’ appointment at the end of February, forcing them to make all 72 employees redundant. The … Read More

Negative response from Government on attempt to bridge gender pay gap

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The government has responded to the Women and Equalities Committee’s second report into the Gender Pay Gap. The committee made a total of 17 evidence based recommendations on 22 March 2016 to tackle the gender pay gap as quickly as possible. The government responded to this report by rejecting the majority of the proposals of the committee. A sample of … Read More

Aqua Interiors staff awarded protective award claim

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Following the unexpected dismissal of more than one hundred employees and subsequent insolvency of Huddersfield-based kitchen and bathroom installer Aqua Interiors in summer 2016, many of the employees instructed Morrish Solicitors to bring a protective award claim against the company for a failure to inform and consult them appropriately before they were dismissed. The family-run company, formed 40 years ago, … Read More

Employment Law Update – January 2017

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In Kellogg Brown & Root (UK) Ltd v (1) Fitton and (2) Ewer, the EAT considered whether employees who were dismissed when their employer had exercised a mobility clause to move them to another office, had in fact been dismissed by reason of redundancy, as decided by the employment tribunal. Background Mr Fitton and Mr Ewer worked at Kellogg’s office … Read More

Victory for gig-economy workers

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Not surprisingly following the decision in the landmark Uber case in October 2016, the Employment Tribunals have again been asked to consider the employment status of the gig-economy workers. The Uber case was of course the first of its kind in the UK. In this case the Tribunal found in favour of the Claimant in establishing that Uber drivers are … Read More

Employment Tribunal rules in favour of dismissed charity workers

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Following the unexpected dismissal of more than twenty employees and subsequent insolvency of London-based childcare charity 4Children in summer 2016, many of the employees instructed Morrish Solicitors to bring a protective award claim against the company for a failure to inform and consult them appropriately before they were dismissed. The charity provided thousands of low-income families with nursery, after-school clubs … Read More

Government’s long awaited reply to ET Fees review

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The government has released the outcome of its review of Employment Tribunal fees and launched a consultation on new proposals to change the ET fees remission scheme (called ‘Help with Fees’). The proposals are pretty small beer. The gross monthly income threshold to apply for a fee remission (reducing or cancelling out the ET fee) would be increased from £1,085 … Read More

Morrish strengthens team with three new appointments

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Morrish Solicitors have announced three key appointments at their West Yorkshire offices. Joining the firm’s Employment team in Leeds is Solicitor Hannah Boynes, who qualified in 2012 and obtained Higher Rights in 2014. Hannah also qualified as a Solicitor-Advocate after completing her training in civil litigation and employment and will be dealing with a wide range of employment matters including unfair dismissal and discrimination at Morrish. Employment Partner … Read More

Employment Tribunal rules in favour of sacked Phones4U workers

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An Employment Tribunal ruled on Friday in favour of former Phones4U workers based at the Head Office and Merry Hill Shopping Centre, who have established that Phones4U failed in their statutory duty to consult with them about impending redundancies. The former workers pursued claims against the mobile phone retailer when they were made redundant following the administration of the company … Read More

Employment Update – December 2016

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In this edition we look at whistleblowing and round up some of the legal happenings towards the end of 2016. Whistleblowing Eiger Securities LLP v Korshunova In this case the claimant alleged that she had been dismissed because she made a protected disclosure. Ms Korshunova complained to her manager that he had used a “chat” programme, whilst logged in as … Read More

When Christmas parties get out of hand

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It is the season for Christmas parties and many workplaces will hold events in pubs or hotels where alcohol is likely to fuel the proceedings. That is the context for the latest in a series of court decisions concerning the liability of employers for the actions of their employees. When I was first in practice my clients would often find … Read More

Employment Update – November 2016

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Reliance on final written warning In Bandara v BBC a tribunal held that the Claimant’s dismissal was fair in the context of allegations of bullying, intimidation and a failure to follow instructions. The Claimant had earlier (in the same year) received a final written warning relating to relatively minor incidents including a breach of editorial guidelines. This is another in … Read More

"Employee Shareholder” regime

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The Autumn Statement sees  the Chancellor phasing out the “employee shareholder” regime – initially by removing the tax advantages associated with it; but in due course it is expected to disappear altogether. This is no great surprise. We blogged about the scheme when it was introduced in late 2013.  You can read our reservations here:  http://morrishsolicitors.blogspot.co.uk/2013/09/employee-shareholders.html Not for the first … Read More

Future world of work and rights of workers inquiry

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The Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee has launched an inquiry into the ‘future world of work’ and in particular, the ‘gig economy’ – agency workers, zero-hours work, the use of ‘self-employment’, worker status, low pay and poor working conditions. They refer to the recent Sports Direct scandal and also other organisations with similar poor working conditions. This is good news. … Read More

Exit payments in the public sector

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Exit payments (or severance payments) in the public sector have been the subject of much media scrutiny in recent months. As employment lawyers acting for private and public sector employees, we regularly come up against these issues when it comes to trying to advise on and negotiate settlements or agree termination packages. As trade union lawyers, we are also opposed … Read More

Employment Update

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The month of September has given us a couple of surprising EAT decisions and both are in favour of employees! The first one considers whether it might be a reasonable adjustment to offer a disabled employee pay protection and the second explores the scope of an ACAS EC certificate. We hope you find them useful.   G4S Cash Solutions (UK) Ltd … Read More

We are looking to recruit an employment lawyer

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We are currently looking to recruit a full-time employment lawyer for our busy central Leeds office. The successful candidate will have been running their own caseload for at least two years, will be able to deal with all types of claimant-focused (primarily contentious) work and provide advice on a telephone advice line. Experience of Trade Union work and previous experience … Read More

Influence of third parties such as HR in disciplinary procedures

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In Dronsfield v University of Reading the EAT looks at the involvement and influence of third parties such as Human Resources in disciplinary procedures. Mr Dronsfield was a Professor at Reading University and whilst working for the University he engaged in a sexual relationship with one of his students. Reading University provided guidance to employees in relationships with students which … Read More

Taxation on Termination – The Price of Simplicity

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HMRC has published a piece of draft legislation which attempts to simplify the current regulations surrounding taxation of termination payments. The legislation is due to come into force in April 2018 and is currently open to consultation until the 5th of October 2016. It has been suggested that the overall complexity of the current tax rules in terms of termination … Read More

Number of workers taking strike action at its second lowest year since 1891

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The Office for National Statistics confirms that the number of working days lost due to strike action in 2015 was 170,000 compared with 788,000 in 2014. The 2015 figure was the second lowest annual total since records began in 1891. See this link. Commenting on the figures, TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said that strikes are far less common these … Read More

Poor treatment of disabled people in the workplace

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Two recent reports show how real the difficulties remain for disabled employees in the workplace. Citizens Advice has published research Working with a health condition or disability on the range of barriers facing disabled people at work. It shows that disabled people or those with a health condition are more than twice as likely to fall out of work in … Read More

Employment Tribunal rules Nomura worker unfairly dismissed in landmark case

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The London Central Employment Tribunal has ruled that Giovanni Lombardo, a former Executive Director in Sales at Nomura International Plc, has been unfairly dismissed. Mr Lombardo pursued a claim against the Japanese investment bank when he was sacked after one of his clients, Invexstar, failed to honour its debts and went into administration, losing Nomura approximately $40 million in May … Read More

Are we all becoming self-employed?

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With the increasing use of “self-employed” roles in today’s “gig economy”[1], there are more and more cases coming to Tribunal concerning employment status and basic employment rights. For example, this week there’s been much media reporting about Uber and Deliveroo. Currently, Uber says its taxi drivers, known as ‘partner drivers’, are genuinely self-employed. This is being considered at Tribunal – … Read More

Report calls for better whistle-blower protection in the UK

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UK whistleblowing law is inadequate and does not meet most international standards, according to a new report published by international NGO Blueprint for Free Speech and the Thomson Reuters Foundation (http://www.trust.org/publications). The report identifies the UK’s protection as scoring only a 37% grading in comparison with other countries. In particular, it highlights a narrow and complex scope of protection for … Read More