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Employment Law Case Studies

Case Study: Confidentiality, DPA, Unfair dismissal, disciplinary, grievance, settlement

An individual had been subjected to allegations relating to drugs within the transport industry. During the investigation into the allegations, the Company breached the confidentiality of the individual by testing him in front of the workforce, thus breaching their policy and procedure in dealing with drug testing and allowing others to know about a positive result, thus damaging the individual’s longstanding, impeccable reputation. He was suspended and sent to the GP for a further test which was clear, yet the Company insisted on having a company travel over four hours to take a third sample, which again came back clear. The Company failed to treat the individual with dignity when carrying out the test and failed to manage the situation respectfully. The individual was provided with advice throughout the grievance procedure which resulted in an admission by the Company of their failures within the process. Settlement negotiations were carried out for the induvial and a satisfactory outcome was obtained.

Case Study: Redundancy process (closure of a site), Employment Tribunal Litigation (Sex discrimination, redundancy, unfair dismissal, wrongful dismissal)

The Company proposed moving the location of its primary business premises from South Wales to Crewe resulting it up to 8 members of staff being at risk of redundancy. Advice was provided on the legal and practical aspects of the redundancy procedure and the client was guided through the process, time frames, meeting agendas and correspondence. Following the process each of the employees were made redundancy with a number being offered alternative work. One of the former employees brought a direct sex discrimination claim based on the grounds that she had not been offered a specific alternative role on the basis she was a wife and mother. She also brought a claim for failure to pay notice pay. We defended the claims on behalf of the client on the grounds that the process was free from discrimination and all monies owing had been paid upon termination. By unanimous decision the employee was unsuccessful on all counts.

Case Study: Sexual orientation discrimination, disability discrimination, unfair dismissal

An employee was dismissed on the grounds of gross misconduct following an allegation of returning to work from his lunch break under the influence of alcohol. The Company had a zero tolerance policy in relation to alcohol at work. The former employee had a client facing role and was judged not to be in a fit state to speak with clients. The employee was suspended and subsequently dismissed on the grounds of gross misconduct. The employee brought claims for unfair dismissal on the grounds of sexual orientation and disability discrimination as he was gay and HIV positive. The Company was unaware of the former employee’s HIV status until it was raised in the ET1. A preliminary hearing was conducted and the disability discrimination claim dropped as a result of the robust denial of any discrimination on the client’s behalf. Directions were issued and complied with including the drafting of witness statements. Tough negotiations led by the acting solicitor in the days leading up to the hearing resulted in settlement on a commercial basis for a nominal sum.

Case Study: Unfair dismissal, disciplinary procedure, union issues, grievances

We provided detailed advice and ongoing support in respect of the very serious HR and employment law implications surrounding allegations of neglect at a care home. This involved up to nine members of staff. This case was in relation an elderly resident who had a broken area on her buttock which was not seen to despite it being reported by a carer. The matter involved day to day support for the client through the investigations into nine members of staff and subsequently seven disciplinary hearings involving a mixture of both nurses and carers. Each employee had trade union representation and every hearing needed to be conducted in accordance with the requirements of CSSIW and the relevant ACAS code of conduct. All disciplinary were conducted to the required standards and appropriate warnings were issued where necessary and the process was completed with minimal disruption to the client staffing requirements and business needs. Importantly, the client’s reputation was protected throughout.

Case Study: Unfair dismissal, wrongful dismissal, directors duties, fraud.

This case involved the dismissal of a Managing Director. We assisted in the processes leading to the dismissal including dealing with allegations of fraud and breach of his director’s obligations to the Company. As part of the process we investigated allegations of falsification of records in relation to speeding tickets in a company vehicle which resulted in the bailiffs attending at the client’s office, theft of high value company property, taking cash payments from clients and retaining the money, arranging for employees to receive money from the business which they were not entitled to and anomalies in the Managing Director’s expenses.

We provided advice and support in respect of the suspension, investigation and the subsequent disciplinary hearing resulting in the dismissal of the Managing Director for gross misconduct.

Case Study: Unfair dismissal, race discrimination and disability discrimination

We represented a Company where a claim had been brought against them by a former employee following their dismissal following allegations of gross misconduct and their failure to attend a disciplinary hearing. A claim was brought against of our client for race discrimination, disability discrimination, unfair dismissal and personal injury.

The former employee stated that the dismissal was unfair and made substantial additional allegations of race and disability discrimination from which he alleged he sustained personal injury. The allegations related to race discrimination which went back over a period of three years. The Company disputed the grounds of claim and a response was drafted strongly denying the allegations and asserting the fairness of the dismissal.

This case was settled on a purely commercial basis for 5% of the value of the schedule of loss.

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