Employment Cases Update

Talash Hotels v Smith UKEAT/0050/19/OO

Date published: 23/12/2019

Appeal against the ET’s award to the Claimant of amounts by way of unauthorised deduction and for unpaid holiday pay. Appeal allowed.

The Claimant, who had been employed by the Respondent for 29 weeks, claimed in the ET that he was working more than his contracted hours without extra pay, and therefore for less than the national minimum wage; and that he had 15 days' unpaid holiday entitlement. The Respondent's response, which asserted that all monies due to the Claimant had been paid, was lodged six days late, and an application for extension of time was refused. The default judgment then followed, making an award for the holiday pay claim that equated to £384 per day, and for the overtime claim representing an extra 21 hours per week. The Respondent's request for reconsideration was refused, as was a request for reasons. The Respondent appealed, referring to Office Equipment Systems Ltd v Hughes [2018] EWCA Civ 1842 which stated that, where a case was sufficiently complex to justify assessing remedy separately from liability, "only an exceptional case would justify excluding the respondent from participating in any oral hearing".

The EAT held that the ET had erred in law in allowing no participation whatsoever by the Respondent at the remedy stage, noting that the fact that the holiday pay award should not be reconsidered by a Tribunal, or that reasons should not be given explaining how it was calculated, offended both common sense as well as basic fairness and justice. Accordingly, the ET's judgment would be quashed and a Remedy Hearing would be held by a fresh ET with meaningful participation by the Respondent.

Read the full text of the judgment on BAILII or download the file by clicking the link below.