This issue includes Employment Tribunal rules that voluntary overtime payments must be included in holiday pay; Whistle-blowing complaints: substance not form?; Religious discrimination; Bonus discretion post-Braganzay and more...


Holiday pay: Employment Tribunal rules that voluntary overtime payments must be included in holiday pay

An Employment Tribunal has decided that voluntary overtime payments should be reflected in holiday pay, provided such payments amount to "normal remuneration". The Tribunal also ruled that voluntary standby and voluntary call out payments should be reflected in holiday pay (White & Others v Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council, ET).

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Whistle-blowing complaints: substance not form?

In an article first published by Thomson Reuters, Managing Associate, Annabel Mackay, reflects on recent trends in the whistle-blowing arena and considers the recent EAT decisions in Morgan v Royal MENCAP Society and Kilraine v London Borough of Wandsworth.

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Religious discrimination: disciplinary action for promoting religious views in the work was not discriminatory

The Employment Appeal Tribunal has upheld a decision that disciplining an employee for promoting her religious beliefs at work was not discriminatory.  Employers are entitled to discipline employees for inappropriate manifestations of their religious beliefs at work.  Here, a senior manager had placed improper pressure on a junior colleague to subscribe to certain religious beliefs.  This amounted to inappropriate conduct justifying disciplinary action (Wasteney v East London NHS Foundation Trust, EAT).

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Bonus discretion post-Braganza: a review of Patural v DB Services (UK) Ltd and Hills v Niksun Inc

In an article first published by Thomson Reuters, Managing Associate, Annabel Mackay, considers how employers' discretionary decision-making has been affected by the Supreme Court decision in Braganza v BP Shipping Ltd.  The article considers the role of Braganza in the recent High Court decision in Patural v DB Services (UK) Ltd and the recent Court of Appeal decision in Hills v Niksun Inc.

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Maternity leave: no obligation to provide childcare vouchers under a salary sacrifice scheme during maternity leave

In Peninsula Business Services Ltd v Donaldson the EAT held that employers are under no statutory obligation to provide childcare vouchers under a salary sacrifice scheme during periods of maternity leave. Anna Lintner, Counsel for Peninsula Business Services Ltd, reports for Addleshaw Goddard LLP on the case and the implications for employers.

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Constructive dismissal: raising performance-related concerns with sick employee amounted to a repudiatory breach of contract

The EAT has upheld a decision that an employer committed a repudiatory breach of an employee's contract of employment by raising performance concerns during a period of sick leave (Private Medicine Intermediaries Ltd v Hodkinson and others, EAT).

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Restrictive covenants: High Court refuses to enforce six-month non-compete covenant

The High Court has refused to grant an interim injunction by Bartholemews Agri Food Ltd (Bartholemews) to enforce restrictive covenants in the contract of employment of an ex-employee, Mr Thornton. The Court held that the restrictions were wider than is reasonably necessary for the protection of Bartholemews' business interests. The Court also refused to enforce a clause relating to confidential information within Mr Thornton's contract (Bartholemews Agri Food Ltd v Thornton, HC).

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Employment contracts: staff handbook provisions concerning absence management were incorporated into the employment contract

The Court of Appeal has found that there was nothing to prevent the absence management triggers set out in an employee handbook from being incorporated into employees' contracts of employment, where the relevant provision was apt for incorporation and the words introducing the handbook into the employer/employee relationship had the "distinct flavour of contractual incorporation" (Department for Transport v Sparks & Ors, CA).

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National Living Wage: employers warned by the Chancellor not to adjust pay and benefits to offset cost of National Living Wage

Within weeks of the introduction of the National Living Wage on 1 April 2016, there have been reports that some employers - primarily those operating in the retail sector - have reduced hours, pay rates and other benefits to offset the cost of raising the wage floor.  In response to this, the Chancellor, George Osborne, has warned that such measures do not abide by the "spirit of the law" and that such employers should be mindful of their social responsibilities and corporate reputation. Labour MPs have also called for penalties to be imposed on employers who make use of such offsetting measures.

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Gender Pay Gap Reporting – where are we and how can AG help you prepare?

In Summer 2015, the Government Equalities Office (GEO) published a "principles-based" consultation seeking views on the key points which would underpin the new gender pay gap reporting regime.

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Consultations, calls for evidence and surveys affecting employment law

A regular feature of our Up to date briefing is to keep you appraised of open consultations, calls for evidence and surveys affecting the employment law arena. If you would like us to respond on your behalf, please let us know.

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Amanda Steadman

Amanda Steadman

Professional Support Lawyer, Employment
London

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