Policy News Journal - 2016-17

The Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals ……………………………………………………………Policy News Journal

On actual receipt, held the Court of Majority (by a majority), in Newcastle Upon Tyne NHS Foundation Trust v Haywood .

In April 2011, Ms Haywood was told she was at risk of redundancy. She turned 50 on 20 July 2011. Redundancy after her 50th birthday would have entitled her to a considerably more generous pension than redundancy beforehand. Ms Haywood was contractually entitled to be given 12 weeks’ notice, but her contract was silent about how notice was deemed given. On 19 April 2011, Ms Haywood went on holiday, returning on 27 April. On 20 April, her employer sent notice of termination by recorded delivery and ordinary post and an email to her husband’s email address. She read the notice on her return from holiday. Although the judges disagreed with each other about the reason why, the majority held contractual notice of termination was given on actual receipt rather than on delivery or any deemed date of receipt. Ms Haywood thus received notice on 27 April and termination took place after her 50th birthday.

With thanks to Daniel Barnett’s employment law bulletin for providing this update.

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Incompetent handling of a grievance may be unreasonable but is not necessarily discrimination 24 March 2017

An employment Appeal tribunal has recently ruled that whilst incompetent handling of a grievance process might be unreasonable it isn’t sufficient in itself to conclude a case of discrimination.

The question being asked in Kent Police v Bowler was, does the incompetent handling of a grievance and a lackadaisical attitude of the investigator sufficient to give rise to an inference of discrimination?

The Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) ruled that it was not.

The employment tribunal made a number of findings of discrimination and victimisation against the employer. The appeal focused on whether the employment tribunal made sufficient findings of facts to give rise to inferences of discrimination and victimisation. The EAT reiterated the caution in Igen v Wong against too readily inferring discrimination merely from unreasonable conduct where there is no evidence of other discriminatory behaviour. Allowing the appeal in part, the EAT held that whilst the incompetent handling of the grievance process and a lackadaisical attitude of the grievance investigator was unreasonable, they were not sufficient findings in and of themselves to allow the employment tribunal to conclude that the investigator held a stereotypical view of the officer being oversensitive about being treated badly because of his race.

With thanks to Daniel Barnett’s employment law bulletin for providing this update.

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Age discrimination 29 March 2017

Can a State provide that under-25s can be employed on zero hour contracts, whilst restricting such contracts for employees aged 25+?

Perhaps, advised Advocate General Bobek in his Opinion in Abercrombie & Fitch v Bordonaro .

Mr Bordonaro worked for Abercrombie & Fitch in Italy, employed under a zero hour contract. On turning 25, he was no longer included in the work schedule. The reason was his age. Italian legislation provides those under 25 (and over 45) can always be employed under zero hour contracts, whilst those 25-45 can only do so in limited circumstances.


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