Archives / 2014 / May
  • Can employers ‘gross up’ an employee’s bad behaviour for dismissal purposes?

    Tags: Unfair Dismissal, Disciplinary Procedure, Employment Law, Employment Tribunal

    Where an employer has several concerns about an employee’s conduct, there is the temptation to combine the incidents to justify disciplinary action for ‘gross misconduct’. However the question that employers should ask themselves is whether the sanction of dismissal is fair in the circumstance, particularly where dismissal is without notice or payment in lieu of notice.

    This was recently examined by the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) in the case of Beardwood v Ham. In this case, a school teacher, Ham, was accused and dismissed for gross misconduct due to four conduct offences the most serious of which related to safeguarding issues. However at the appeal stage the issue relating to safeguarding, was only partially upheld but the original sanction remained.

    When … more

  • Will UK follow France in allowing employees to donate leave to those employees with a seriously ill child?

    Tags: Employment Law, Employment Tribunal, Working Time Regulations 1998

    Interestingly France’s parliament has recently passed a law which would allow workers to donate their paid leave to colleagues with seriously ill children. The French case of Christophe Germain, a worker in the constituency of far-right MP Paul Salen, was given days off by colleagues to look after his son Mathys during his battle with cancer. This was done with the approval of his bosses and prompted inspiration for the Bill. Mr Germain’s colleagues donated 170 days paid leave whilst his son battled with the disease.

    This is not the first time that the concept has been introduced. In other countries, for example Canada, a parent can take up to 37 weeks off work if their child is critically ill, though the employer is not required to pay the worker during that period of leave. … more

  • Working Sleepovers and the National Minimum Wage (NMW)

    Tags: National Minimum Wage, Employment Law, Employment Tribunal

    According to virtually any empirical research you would care to read, we are an ageing population. It follows then that the number of individuals engaged in care-based employment will continue to rise alongside the number of elderly and vulnerable people requiring care.

    Owing to the demand placed on the time of such workers, staying overnight to care for their charges is a very common practice. It is important then that the legal mechanics of how those in the care industry are paid for unsociable hours are clear, both to the workers themselves and their employers.

    The recent Employment Appeal Tribunal (“EAT”) case of Esparon t/a Middle West Residential Care Home v Slavikovska has further clarified the position where a care worker is required to sleepover.

    The core … more

  • Flexible working changes: what’s new?

    Tags: Flexible Working, Employment Law, Employment Law Reforms 2014

    Some of you may know that from the 30 June, flexible working is being extended to all employees.

    The service requirements will continue to apply (26 weeks of continuous employment) however the current statutory procedure will be abolished. Employers will have to continue to deal with requests reasonably and they can continue to reject requests for business reasons. 

    Initially, this change may lead to an increase in requests, so the question for all employers will be how should they prioritise requests?

    Prioritising requests

    You should look at the business case for each application individually. Consider matters such as what part of the organisation the employee works in, their position, the flexible pattern requested, what impact it will have on the team and the business as a … more


  • Breach Of Contract: What Are Your Options?

    Tags: Breach of Contract, Dispute Resolution, Damages, Loss, Remedy

    It is always important to have the right contract in place for any transaction so that both parties are clear about expectations and obligations. However, no matter how good the relationship between the parties, sometimes disputes occassionally arise if any of the terms of the contract are broken. If you are involved in a contract and the other party fails to live up to their end of the contract, what can you do? One option is to sue them for breach of contract. 

    What Is A Contract?

    A contract is a promise or an agreement between two or more parties that is legally binding. This promise can either be made expressly in writing or implied, which means it was communicated orally or by conduct. A contract arises when an offer is made to one party, which is then accepted by another. … more


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