Bulletins

Employment and Pensions E-Bulletin Article

This month the Court of Appeal considered whether an employer (Morrisons) should be held vicariously liable for an employee’s brutal and unprovoked attack on a customer. Benjamin Loxton summarises the case and the useful guidance that the Court provided on the circumstances where an employer may be found to be liable for its employees’ actions.


Employment and Pensions E-Bulletin Article

2013 has seen a raft of new employment legislation as the Government has put into action many of the issues it identified as part of its review of employment law and “Red Tape Challenge”. However, as a result of this, keeping track of what you should be changing in your business is not easy.  To help, we have set out a checklist of the main action points that you should have implemented in your business or be looking to address.


Employment and Pensions E-Bulletin Article

In a recent case the Court of Appeal confirmed that an employer’s requirement for its workers (including Christian workers) to work on Sundays was not indirect religious discrimination as it was objectively justified.  However, it also clarified that the fact that the belief that Sunday should be a day of rest is not a “core component” of Christianity should not have weighed so heavily in the balance in the decision. We look at the case, the points to take away and why, contrary to some reports, it is not the green light for employers to impose Sunday working.


Employment and Pensions E-Bulletin Article

We appreciate that keeping on top of the large number of employment cases that come through the courts and remembering the salient points to take away from them is not an easy task for any employer or HR professional.  To help, we have produced a summary of some of the key cases from 2013 by topic and set out the main practical points that you can take away from them and apply in your business.


Employment and Pensions E-Bulletin Article

On 1 October 2013, only 3 years after their general introduction, the Government repealed the provisions of the Equality Act 2010 which made employers liable for certain acts of harassment of their staff by third parties.  This was on the basis that there was “a lack of evidence that there [was] any significant need for them or that they [were] effective in practice”.  It also considered that employees had other means of legal redress. 


Employment and Pensions E-Bulletin Article

The information that employers can seek from a prospective employee regarding old convictions and minor cautions is now restricted and therefore the questions employers may include on an application form or in the interview process should be reviewed. We set out the points to note and steps to take.


Employment and Pension E-Bulletin Article

This summer will see the introduction of new provisions aimed at enabling employers to have pre-termination negotiations supposedly without fear of their discussions ending up in tribunal. ACAS has now produced its final statutory code of practice on the provisions. We summarise below what the provisions and code mean in practice.


Employment and Pensions E-Bulletin Article

In October 2012, George Osborne announced plans to introduce a new employment status - the "employee owner" (subsequently changed to “employee shareholder”). In summary, employees give up some of their employment rights (including the right to a statutory redundancy payment and to claim unfair dismissal, except where their dismissal is automatically unfair or discriminatory), in return for between £2,000 and £50,000 worth of shares in their employer issued free of charge and without Capital Gains Tax being payable on any future sale.


What does it mean for employers?

Four British Christians complained that they suffered discrimination at work on the grounds of their religion or belief.  A member of British Airways' check-in staff (Eweida) and a nurse at the Royal Devon and Exeter hospital (Chaplin) brought their claims on the basis that they were refused the right to wear a visible cross.  A registrar (Ladele) and a counsellor for Relate (McFarlane) brought claims as a result of being disciplined and dismissed for refusing to comply with their employers' respective requirements to undertake civil partnerships and provide psycho-sexual counselling to same sex couples.  Having ultimately had no success in the UK courts against their employers the individuals took their cases to the European Court of Human Rights.  They argued that the UK government had failed to protect their rights to hold and manifest their religion (Article 9).


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