Does the Simmons v Castle 10% uplift apply to employment tribunal awards for injury to feelings?

by Laurie Anstis on February 27, 2015

As part of the Jackson reforms of civil litigation, in October 2012 the Court of Appeal announced in the case of Simmons v Castle that awards of general damages for pain, suffering and loss of amenity were to be increased by 10%.

At the time I suggested that this could also apply to employment tribunal awards for injury to feelings, and thereby raise the so-called “Vento bands“. The Court of Appeal later revised their judgment, and it seemed to me that this revision made it even more likely that the judgment applied in the employment tribunal.

Since then, the Presidential Guidance on case management issued last year took it as uncontentious that the judgment applied (“remedy”, para 14), and the EAT has held: Read the rest of this entry »

2015 increase in employment tribunal compensation limits

by Laurie Anstis on February 16, 2015

The Employment Rights (Increase of Limits) Order 2015 has now been published, giving the compensation limits that will apply from 6 April 2015.

The most significant items are that the limit on the compensatory award for unfair dismissal will increase from £76,574 to £78,335 and the limit on a week’s pay for various purposes will increase from £464 to £475.

Caste discrimination

by Laurie Anstis on December 19, 2014

In Chandok v Tirkey the EAT has for the first time considered whether caste can fall within the protected characteristic of race for the purposes of the Equality Act.

Langstaff P expressly disavowed the creation of any new general point of principle in his judgment, saying “My focus has been on the appeal in this particular case, in its particular circumstances: I have not seen my role as being to resolve academic disputes, and establish more general propositions, of no direct relevance to the case in hand.

He found that “there may be factual circumstances in which the application of the label “caste” is appropriate, many of which are capable – depending on their facts – of falling within the scope of section 9(1) [race discrimination],  particularly coming within “ethnic origins”, as portraying a group with characteristics determined in part by descent, and of a sufficient quality to be described as “ethnic”“. Read the rest of this entry »

New holiday pay SI now published

by Laurie Anstis on December 19, 2014

The Deductions from Wages (Limitation) Regulations 2014 have now been published, with an intended implementation date of 8 January 2015.

Regulation 2 applies the new two year limitation period only to the first category of deductions from wages under section 27(1) of the Employment Rights Act 1996, which is “any fee, bonus, commission, holiday pay or other emolument referable to … employment”. The various other categories of deductions (from (s27(1)(b)-(j)) are not caught by this limitation. Regulation 4 provides that regulation 2 only applies in respect of claims submitted on or after 1 July 2015. Read the rest of this entry »

Holiday pay back pay claims to be limited to two years

by Laurie Anstis on December 18, 2014

The government has announced today that it is introducing regulations to prevent holiday pay claims from stretching back more than two years.

According to the announcement:

“Changes made to regulations under the Employment Rights Act 1996 will mean that claims to Employment Tribunals on this issue cannot stretch back further than 2 years.

Workers can still make claims under the existing arrangements for the next 6 months which will act as a transition period before the new rules come into force. The changes apply to claims made on or after 1 July 2015.”

Draft regulations will shortly be published. It remains to be seen whether this limit will apply to all unlawful deductions from wages claims, or just claims for holiday pay. The notes to the announcement appear to suggest it could apply to all unlawful deductions from wages claims.

[Update 19 December 2014: The new regulations have now been published.]