Employment Cases Update

J v K & Anor [2019] EWCA Civ 5

Date published: 23/01/2019

Appeal against the refusal to extend time for an appeal against a costs judgment. Appeal allowed.

The Claimant, who was suffering from a degree of mental ill-health, appealed to the EAT against a costs judgment made against him at the ET. He sent his appeal by email 5 minutes before the deadline but the files were too big for the EAT's server and he had to send them again in separate emails. However, by the time the EAT had received them, 1 hour later, they were out of time. His application for an extension of time was refused and he was given permission to appeal to the Court of Appeal on 2 grounds:

(1) whether the statements of principle at [36] of the EAT's judgment needs modification to take account of the duty to make reasonable adjustments under the Equality Act 2010; and if so whether reasonable adjustments should have been made for the Appellant;
(2) whether the combination of (a) the very modest delay of one hour in transmitting the required documents to the EAT and (b) the reason for the delay being the limited size of the EAT's inbox ought to have amounted to exceptional circumstances such as to require an extension of time in order to comply with the overriding objective.

The Court of Appeal allowed the appeal. In circumstances where the cause of the problem was the EAT's own system, and where service was correctly effected within an hour of the deadline, this was one of those exceptional cases where an extension was required as a matter of justice.

Read the full text of the judgment on Bailii

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Employment Claims without a Lawyer 2nd edition published March 2018