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Weekly Issue 100 - May 2005

Labour & European Law Review Download issue

In the news

According to statistics published by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), far more employees are now aware that they can request to work flexibly than in 2003 when the right was first introduced.

Not so calculating

In unfair dismissal claims, tribunals can make basic awards of up to £8,400, as well as compensatory awards of up to £56,800 for current and future financial loss.

Uplifting awards

Tribunals have stated for many years that interest cannot be awarded in unfair dismissal cases.

However, in Melia v Magna Kansei Ltd the employment appeal tribunal (EAT) has just said that tribunals can award an uplift of 2.5 per cent to compensate claimants whose payments are delayed.

Pensioned off

From 6 April, most people buying a business have to offer a minimum level of pension provision to employees transferred under a sale governed by the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 1981 (TUPE).

Progress on pay

Indirect pay discrimination can arise in two circumstances. Firstly, when there is a practice that disproportionately affects the pay of women (or men). Or secondly, when there is a group of workers who are predominantly female (or male) but who have less favourable terms than another group of mainly male (or female) workers.

Making amends

Trade union advisors often draft their members' tribunal claims for them. Unfortunately, the Court of Appeal has just made that job more difficult by deciding in Ali v Office of National Statistics (2005, IRLR 201) that claimants have to make sure they have identified all the right claims and covered all eventualities (either specifically or generally).

Liable for stress

For a claim of workplace negligence to be successful, the claimant has to be able to show, among other things, that their employer could have foreseen their injury.

Intention to harass

Stress claims are notoriously difficult to prove, a point reinforced just recently by the Court of Appeal in Banks v Ablex Ltd. But unlike the case of Majrowski, the Court decided that Mrs Banks could not rely on the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 to help her.