Employment Cases Update

Q v Secretary of State for Justice UKEAT/0120/19/JOJ

Date published: 17/01/2020

Appeal against the ET’s decision dismissing the Claimant’s claim of unfair dismissal. Appeal dismissed.

The Claimant was employed by the Respondent in the Probation Service. Her daughter was placed on a Child Protection Plan due to the Claimant's alleged behaviour (which the Claimant strongly disputed). The Claimant was dismissed for failing to report the matter fully to the Respondent, despite a similar situation having arisen a year or so earlier, and she brought a claim for unfair dismissal. The ET found that the reason for the Claimant's dismissal was "her gross misconduct", and dismissed her claim. The Claimant appealed on the grounds that (1) the ET erred in its consideration of the impact of her rights under Article 8 of European Convention on Human Rights when finding that it was proportionate (and hence within the band of reasonable responses) to have dismissed her for not informing the Respondent sooner than she did, and (2) the ET made contradictory and/or non-Meek-compliant findings.

The EAT held that the ET had properly considered the impact on the Claimant's Article 8 rights, and had correctly found that these were engaged; it had also found that the decision to dismiss was not an unjustified or disproportionate infringement of the Claimant's Article 8 rights. Further, the ET's decision was not non-Meek-compliant and did not otherwise involve an error of law.

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