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Can You Be Working When You’re Asleep? Court of Appeal Says No!

Many employees, particularly in the care industry, are required to sleep in overnight at or near their workplaces in order to provide assistance if needed – but are they entitled to receive the National Minimum Wage (NMW) for hours spent in slumber? The Court of Appeal has tackled that issue in a guideline ruling. The two cases under consideration concerned...

Dismissal without a Right of Appeal Is Almost Always Unfair

It is very nearly always unfair to dismiss employees without affording them a right of appeal. The Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) made that point in the case of a pizza restaurant employee who was sacked in the mistaken belief that his right to work in the UK had expired. The competent, capable and well-regarded worker was doing well in his job, having risen...

Whistleblowing – Information or Allegation? Guideline Ruling

Workers who disclose information in the public interest are entitled to protection as whistleblowers – but what exactly qualifies as ‘information’ within the meaning of the Employment Rights Act 1996? The Court of Appeal has considered that issue in a guideline case. A local education authority employee claimed to have suffered detrimental treatment as a...

Key Staff Member Quit to Join a Rival? Keep a Lid on Your Anger!

The departure of a key staff member is often a fractious moment, particularly if they are intent on joining a rival. However, as a High Court defamation case showed, it is vital for employers to keep a level head and to avoid making public statements that they might later regret. The case concerned a foster carer who was under contract to an agency. After she...

Ex-Car Sales Manager Overturns ‘Perverse’ Employment Tribunal Ruling

Employment Tribunal (ET) decisions are not always right, but it is very rare for them to be condemned as perverse. That is, however, exactly what happened in the case of a car sales manager who was irrationally ruled 50 per cent responsible for his unfair dismissal. The manager, who was in charge of five car showrooms, had worked for the same employer for 25...

ACAS Accused of Failing to Meet Staff Consultation Duties

The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas) has, since 1975, helped to resolve some of Britain’s most bitter industrial disputes. However, an important tribunal ruling has established that it owes the same legal duty as any other substantial employer to consult with its staff pursuant to collective agreements. A trade union had complained to the...