Employment Cases Update

Akhigbe v St Edward Homes Ltd and others UKEAT/0110/18/JOJ

Date published: 14/03/2019

Appeal against the ET’s rejection of the Claimant’s further claim on the ground that he was “using an old ACAS number”. Appeal dismissed.

The Claimant had previously brought a whistleblowing claim against the Respondent, which was struck out on the ground that it had no reasonable prospect of succeeding at trial. He had obtained an early conciliation (EC) number in respect of that claim, and used that same EC number for a similar, but slightly expanded, claim. The ET rejected the Claimant's claim, and he appealed.

The EAT considered that there was nothing to indicate that the ET had asked itself about the relationship between the subject matter of the first claim and that of the second claim; if it had done so, it would have appreciated that it was obvious that both were claims "relating to" the same "matter" within s 18A(1) Employment Tribunals Act 1996, and the ET had therefore misdirected itself by requiring a fresh EC certificate; however, the EAT declined to set aside the ET's decision, because the error could not have affected the outcome, and held that the second claim was clearly an abuse of process and the ET was therefore bound to reject it, applying r 12(1)(b) ET Rules of Procedure.

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