Employment Cases Update

Klukowska v Bridge of Weir Leather Company Ltd UKEATS/0038/18/SS

Date published: 19/03/2021

Appeal against the ET’s dismissal of the Claimant’s discrimination claims for non-compliance with an “unless” order. Appeal allowed.

The Claimant, a litigant in person, brought various discrimination claims against the Respondent, relying on three protected characteristics. The ET made an "unless" order, requiring the Claimant to supply details of statements or actions alleged in relation to her claims, and the Claimant supplied a document (the "Specification") that purported to comply with the order. The ET described the Specification as "confused and confusing", indicating that the Claimant failed to comply with the order by, amongst other things, aggregating her protected characteristics rather than separating them out. As a result, since the ET's decision coincided with the first day of the full hearing, the hearing did not proceed and the claims were brought to an end. The Claimant appealed, contending that the Specification satisfied the terms of the order and that, in arriving at the opposite conclusion, the ET failed to apply the law; and the Claimant argued that the ET's judgment was not Meek-compliant.

The EAT held that the ET had erred in law by failing to acknowledge that the Specification was in material compliance with the order; and it held that the ET's judgment was not Meek-compliant, since it did not engage directly with the terms of the Specification and explain why it was defective. The EAT concluded that it was in as good a position as the ET to decide that the Specification complied with the order; accordingly, the case would be remitted to the ET with a view to progressing the claims.

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