Employment Cases Update

Leeds & Yorkshire Housing Association Ltd v Fothergill UKEAT/0211/20/LA

Date published: 10/06/2021

Appeal against the ET’s judgment extending the primary time limit applicable to two claims for race discrimination. Appeal allowed.

The Claimant worked on a temporary contract for the Respondent. When the Respondent gave notice to terminate his contract, the Claimant presented a claim form asserting race discrimination concerning the rejection of his applications for two roles that had become available over 16 months earlier. On the question of whether the time limit for presenting the claim should be extended because the Claimant was ignorant of his rights, the ET decided that it was just and equitable to do so. The Respondent appealed, contending that the ET's reasons for concluding (1) that the Claimant's ignorance of his legal rights had been genuine and reasonable, and (2) that the reasons given by the Claimant for his ignorance outweighed the importance of prejudice to the Respondent, were inadequate.

The EAT held that the ET had erred in its consideration of reasonableness and also in its assessment of the balance of prejudice. Accordingly, the matter would be remitted to a fresh ET for a preliminary hearing to decide all aspects of the question of whether it was just and equitable to extend time for the presentation of the Claimant's claims of race discrimination until the date on which he presented his claim form.

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