Employment Law Newsletter - April 2016
This month’s newsletter includes the following:-
- Whistleblowing: Protected disclosures - information or allegation?
- Whistleblowing: When the facts are in dispute there must be a hearing
- Staff Handbooks: Appeal Decision in Department for Transport v Sparks and Others
- Dismissal: A genuine belief employee not permitted to work in the UK was fair
- Commercial Agent: What is a “new customer” under a contract for indemnity purposes?
- Restrictive Covenants: Guidance on principles governing damages for breach
- EU Data Protection Reform to Proceed
- EU Trade Secrets Directive Approved
- TUC publish independent advice on implications of “Brexit”
- BIS publish updated advice on Calculating the Minimum Wage
- National Living Wage and National Minimum Wage Consultation: 2016 evidence required
- ACAS guide to combat sex discrimination
- DBS applications: Workforce guidance published
- New Employment Agency Amendment Regulations come into force in May
Whistleblowing: Protected disclosures - information or allegation?
In Kilraine v London Borough of Wandsworth UKEAT/0260/15, the claimant, Kilraine, was an Education Achievement Project Manager employed by Wandsworth Borough Council. She was made redundant but she complained that in reality she was dismissed for whistleblowing on issues regarding bullying and harassment, and for …
Whistleblowing: When the facts are in dispute there must be a hearing
We are all familiar with the phrase “in the public interest” but this qualification to disclosures made by whistleblowers was only available as a protection from dismissal as recently as 2013. To succeed with a protected disclosure on the basis that it was made in the public interest, the worker must hold a …
Staff Handbooks: Appeal Decision in Department for Transport v Sparks and Others
We previously reported the decision of the High Court in the case of Sparks and Others v DfT in March 2015.
In that case several governmental agencies wanted to tighten up the absence management policy contained in the Staff Handbook. The issue was whether they could make a unilateral change to the policy. The …
Dismissal: A genuine belief that an employee not permitted to work in the UK was fair
In Nayak v Royal Mail Ltd UKEATS/0011/15, Mr Nayak claimed he had been unfairly dismissed by his employer. The tribunal at first instance found he had been dismissed for a fair substantial reason, as provided by section 98(1)(b) of the Employment Rights Act 1996 (ERA). The reason given by the …
Commercial Agent: What is a “new customer” under a contract for indemnity purposes?
In the case of Marchon Germany GMBH v Yvonne Karaszkiewwicz, Case C 315/14, 7 April 2016 (Curia), the ECJ has been examining the meaning of “new customers”. When a commercial agency agreement is terminated the agent has the right to a payment for certain things, thanks to the Commercial …
Guidance on principles governing damages for breach of restrictive covenants
Case law has provided guidance before on how damages should be awarded. Known as “Wrotham Park Damages”, the case of Wrotham Park Estate Co Ltd v Parkside Homes Ltd  1 WLR 798 set out how an award should be judged. There was a breach of a restrictive covenant which had not actually resulted in loss to …
EU Data Protection Reform to Proceed
After four years work, the European Parliament has voted in favour of a new General Data Protection Regulation and Data Protection Directive. This will replace the current EU Data Protection Directive (No.95/46). EU Regulations are directly applicable to member states and do not require implementation into national law, meaning that in two years’ …
EU Trade Secrets Directive Approved
In an effort to address the differing protection provided across the EU for trade secrets and to promote cross-border investment, the European Parliament has voted to approve a new EU Trade Secrets Directive. The Directive concentrates on providing a minimum standard definition of trade secret, meaning information which is secret, has commercial value because …
TUC publish independent advice on implications of “Brexit”
The TUC has commissioned an independent opinion from Michael Ford QC of Old Square Chambers on the implications of BREXIT which you can view by clicking on this link. In it, he highlights that simply repealing the European Communities Act of 1972, which made the UK a member of the EU, would not be sufficient and that while …
BIS publish updated advice on Calculating the Minimum Wage
From 1 April 2016, the national living wage applies to workers aged 25 and over. BIS has published updated guidance in the form of a booklet called “Calculating the Minimum Wage” to help employers comply with this legislation, adding in the new rates and additional information on national living wage. You can obtain a copy …
National Living Wage and National Minimum Wage Consultation: 2016 evidence required
The Low Pay Commission, set up by the government, has recently launched a new consultation regarding the National Living Wage and National Minimum Wage which may be of particular interest to employers of low-paid workers, particularly those in sectors such as retail, hospitality, social care, cleaning and …
ACAS guide to combat sex discrimination
On the back of 7,000 (or, one could argue, far too many) calls to ACAS last year related to sex discrimination at work, ACAS has published new guidance to helps employers and managers understand equality law better and how to spot and deal with sexually discriminatory behaviour. This guide covers the basics, and focuses on the following six …
DBS applications: Workforce guidance published
The Disclosure & Barring Service has published three new guides for employers to help identify the type of workforce that a DBS applicant that they are recruiting will be working in dependent on activity. For example, there is one guide for working with adults, one for working with children and one where the primary focus of the work is not …
New Employment Agency Amendment Regulations come into force in May
The conduct of employment agencies and businesses is governed in large part by The Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Businesses Regulations 2003 (SI 2003/3319). From 8 May 2016, these are amended by the nattily titled The Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Businesses (Amendment) Regulations 2016.
Some of …