Do you like gardening? For many stressed and overworked employees the prospect of being placed on an extended period of garden leave might sound attractive. You remain an employee, you still get paid and although you have to be available to assist with any work that might arise, you don’t have to attend the office. Sound like fun?
Case Round Up
Employers: watch out. Trying to pay notice pay as an ex gratia payment could land you in trouble.
That is what happened in the case of Publicis Consultants Uk Ltd v Ms O’Farrell in a case that was heard before the Employment Appeal Tribunal last month.
The issue in dispute was the company’s description of a payment equivalent to three month’s gross salary as an “ex-gratia” payment. She was contractually entitled to three month’s notice monies but was dismissed for reason of redundancy with only four days notice. Although she was paid the ex-gratia monies, a statutory redundancy payment and her holiday monies she sued for, amongst other claims, breach of contract. The employer tried to say that they had effectively paid the notice monies by way of the ex-gratia.
There have been some interesting reported cases over the last couple of weeks on a broad range of topics. For instance,
Legal Representation at Internal Disciplinary Hearings
Just two this time. An upsurge in work has meant I haven’t been blogging as assiduously as usual. There also haven’t been very many interesting cases around – apart from these two below.
The Court of Appeal has ruled that an seaman employed by a company operating from and registered in Guernsey, on board a ship registered in Nassau, but which spent its time sailing between Portsmouth and the Channel Islands could bring a claim for unfair dismissal. The Claimant lived in Suffolk. The Court held that the important factor was where his duty began and ended – which was Portsmouth. He can proceed with his claim for unfair dismissal.
There have been some noteworthy cases over the last couple of weeks, such as;
Grainger plc v Nicholson UKEAT/0219/09/ZT
Climate change can be a philosophical belief and thus capable of protection within the terms of the Employment Equality (Religion or Belief) Regulations 2003. Please see my previous post on this high profile case.
A case on the distinction between employee, worker or self-employed. The Respondents were car valeters. All the factors usually considered in determining whether a person was employed or self-employed suggested they were employees. The “contract” they signed said they were “sub-contractors” but that did not reflect the reality of the situation. The CA held they were employees.