Bullimore v Witham Weld (2011)

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A case on the duty owed to ex employees when giving references – June 2011

In this case, a former employer provided an illegal discriminatory adverse reference to a prospective employer which prevented a former employee from obtaining employment with the prospective employer. It was said in the case that the giving of damaging references can be a form of unlawful discriminatory victimisation and since it might not be possible to bring a claim against the prospective employer, it would be an unsatisfactory outcome for the employee if he could not claim compensation form the former employer who provided the discriminatory reference.
In the case of references, writes Stephen Brookes, it is far better for employers to keep the reference simple, reciting the fact of employment, over what period the employee was employed and the job the employee undertook.