Keep up to date with Salmons Solicitors using our news section for the latest information.
Discrimination Law is still confusing the courts!
In this case the Claimant suffered from a disability which meant that she had to have more time off work than a person who was not disabled. She received a warning letter about her absences from work and lodged a grievance that the warning was discriminatory because her time off was by reason of her disability which was a protected characteristic under the Equality Act 2010. The grievance was rejected and she brought proceedings alleging that the policy which required the sending of a warning letter was in need of adjustment and she had a right to adjustment to accommodate a disability under the Equality Act.
She claimed that there was indirect discrimination because a policy which was at first sight neutral was, on closer examination, operating in such a way as to disadvantage the disabled.
The claimant failed in the Tribunal and on appeal to the High Court. Discrimination cases require a comparator and the comparator in this case was a employee off sick for the same amount of time but who was not disabled and the court found that such a comparable person would have been treated the same under the policy so there was no discrimination by reason of disability.
The case demonstrates how easy it is to select the wrong comparator.
The Claimant was nothing if not persistent and she appealed to the Court of Appeal.
In the Court of Appeal, it was said that the lower courts had made a mistake in their approach. It was not correct to focus on the policy of sending warning letters when a level of absenteeism triggered such a letter but the policy at fault was the rule which required an employee to maintain a certain level of attendance to avoid disciplinary sanctions.
The appropriate comparator was wrong. In disability discrimination the employer must discriminate towards the disabled employee and provide more favourable treatment. The proper comparator was not a non-disabled employee with the same level of absences. To avoid discrimination a disabled employee had to be allowed a greater number of absences before disciplinary sanction.
The Claimant still failed, however, because the Court said that her proposed adjustments to the policy were unreasonable.
However it is now easier for a disabled employee with an adverse absence record to prove discrimination than it was immediately before this case.
Latest News Articles
THE OFFICE WILL BE CLOSED FROM 12PM ON 1ST MAY 2018 FOR TRAINING ON THE NEW EU GENERAL DATA PROTECTION REGULATION 2016 WHICH COMES INTO FORCE LATER THIS MONTH Read More
Has the tide has finally turned in social services failure to remove cases? Read More
Stephen Brookes, Assessor of the Personal Injury Panel of the Law Society, looks at the recent decision in Crawley v Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council Read More
The Government is still deluding itself in thinking that denial of access to justice will cause insurance premiums to fall. Read the full report here - Read More
Latest Government attempts to deny access to the courts are responded to by the Solicitors' profession. Read More
Association of Personal Injury Lawyers calls for a complete ban on nuisance calls about accident claims
APIL have issued recently a press release to try and persuade the Government to put an outright ban on intimidating cold callers pestering members of the public to make accident claims for accidents which they have never had. Read More
The Government's plans to prevent irritating claims being brought against their friends in the insurance industry continue to attract criticism. Read More
Stephen Brookes reviews two cycling injury cases making the legal headlines recently Read More
Stephen Brookes looks at two personal injury cases on either side of the fence; in the former case the claimant won but in the latter case the claimant failed. Read More
If ever there was a minefield in the application of applicable rules it is in the area of discrimination law. Stephen Brookes reviews the recent case of Griffiths v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions ( 2015) Read More
Since April 2015 the Court has had power to strike out a claim for personal injury compensation if a claimant has been fundamentally dishonest - but what does this mean? Read More
Supreme Court decision changes the meaning of an unlawful penalty charge in contract law - Beavis v Parking Eye reviewed Read More
Working time might now include travel to and from the first and the last job for employees who are based at home. Read More
Following the decision of Salmons Solicitors to withdraw from all legal aid work upon the grounds of unsustainable remuneration levels, there is increasing pressure for criminal defence legal practices. Read More
Stephen Brookes reviews the latest attempts by the Coalition Government to make the legal claims process unworkable. Read More
Stephen Brookes reviews two recent personal injury claims where the claimants both failed. Read More
There can be few more fun pursuits than taking your off roader into difficult and challenging off road terrain, but before you do so, a cautionary word about a recent change of insurance law, writes Stephen Brookes. Read More
Stephen Brookes reviews the recent case of Bear Scotland Ltd v Fulton on the inclusion of overtime into holiday pay calculations. Read More
Stephen Brookes reviews the decision of the Supreme Court in Coventry and Lawrence (2014) Read More
High Court Judge rules Government's Motor Insurers Compensation Scheme for uninsured drivers unlawful. The case is reviewed by our personal injury specialist Stephen Brookes Read More
Stephen Brookes reviews two recent cases dealing with the question of when an employer can be liable for injuries inflicted by a member of the workforce on another person Read More
Farah Gilani reviews a January 2014 case involving a prosecution over an unguarded piece of machinery. Read More