Disability

The articles featured on hrlaw.co.uk were correct at the time of publication and should not be relied on or treated as a substitute for legal advice relevant to particular circumstances. Please contact us if you require legal assistance on any employment issues.

Auntie considers whether obesity falls within the definition of disability under the Equality Act 2010

Dear Auntie, I am an HR manager and we have an employee who can be medically described as obese. This employee has a poor sickness record and has been absent from work due to various conditions including asthma, depression, a bad back and chronic fatigue...

NHS consultant awarded £4.5 million for sex and race discrimination

Headlines in the press were dominated at the end of 2011 with the decision of an Employment Tribunal to award a consultant £4.5 million in relation her successful claims of unfair dismissal, sex discrimination and race discrimination against her...

Case Watch 2012

In December, employment partner Mark Watson spoke at the last Fox Williams hrlaw seminar of the year about some important court and employment tribunal decisions to look out for in 2012. Below is a summary of those cases. Age discrimination ...

Auntie looks at recent developments on reasonable adjustments

Dear Auntie, I was recently talking to another HR colleague and he mentioned that there have been a number of recent cases on disability discrimination and, in particular, the duty to make reasonable adjustments.  It made me realise that I’m...

The Olympic Games 2012: One year to go - are you ready?

Dear Auntie With only one year to go to the London Olympic Games, we need to start planning and getting in shape! The summer holidays always cause a headache for us in the HR team, but we are expecting August 2012 to be even more challenging when the...

New Year, New Problems

New year, new problems.. 2010 saw key developments in case law which Ozlem Kulle and Helen Besch outline in their articles. This article highlights key cases that are likely to be decided in 2011. Age discrimination The ECJ is considering in the German...

2010 case round up (part 2)

This is the second serving of our selection of key cases from 2010.  1. KRAFT FOODS v HASTIE – age discrimination / justification For more details of this case, see our Ask Auntie piece from our August 2010 newsletter . Summary:  ...

What employers really need to know about the Equality Act 2010

Dear Aunty I know that the Equality Act came into force last week, but I have not been able to keep up to speed with the changes it introduced. Please can you summarise the ones most likely to be relevant to HR? Thanks Harry Harman     ...

Top tips for dealing with discrimination claims

Companies frequently make some fairly basic mistakes when defending discrimination claims.  If you are an HR manager and you have just received notice that one of your ex-employees has decided to pursue a claim for discrimination against the Company,...

Facing up to facebook - the perils of social networking sites in the work-place

Over the past few yeas, employers have faced increasing problems arising out of the use of social networking sites and blogs in the work-place.  As a consequence, some employers have banned all use of such sites at work but this can be seen as an over...

Employment law under the new coalition government- Top Tips on what employers can expect

Information is now emerging on the changes employers can expect under the Conservative - Liberal Government. ‘The Coalition: Our Programme for Government’ was published on 20 May 2010 and outlines the following principal commitments on employment...

The Equality Act 2010 - Implications for Employers

The Equality Act received royal assent on 8 April 2010 and, according to the current Government timetable, the majority of the Act’s provisions should come into force in October 2010. The Act’s purpose is to harmonise existing discrimination...

Top Tips for Dealing with Employment Tribunal Disclosure

These top tips follow on from the guidance in this month’s Aunty Advice which details the nature of an employer’s obligation to disclose relevant documents as part of the employment tribunal litigation process. Top tips for dealing with...

Auntie Advises on Employment Tribunal Disclosure Obligations

Dear Auntie, We have just returned from a Case Management Discussion and the Employment Tribunal has ordered that disclosure be carried out over the next month.  We have a number of internal documents about the litigation which we would rather not...

Key Cases for 2010

2009 saw several key developments which Hrlaw took a brief look at in December ( http://www.hrlaw.co.uk/site/focus/employment_law_cases_2009 ). This article looks forward to 2010 and at further key cases which are likely to be decided in the new year. ...

Fighting for rights: new guidance on workplace harassment and violence

Workplace stress levels are possibly higher than ever in the current economic climate. Employees are concerned about possible redundancies, pay cuts, and having to work increasingly hard because of pressure from management.  It is at times like this...

Discrimination by association: handle with care

Martha Arnold considers the implications of the ECJ’s ruling in Coleman v Attridge Law, in which an employee alleged that she suffered discrimination from her employer because of her disabled son. Ms Coleman, was employed as a legal secretary at...

House of Lords gives comparator test the (Nova) cold shoulder

Aron Pope considers the House of Lord’s reasoning in its decision in Mayor and Burgesses of the London Borough of Lewisham v Malcolm which overturned the previous comparator test for disability discrimination claims. In a majority decision, the House...

Pies and Prejudice - Employers to Assist in the Battle of the Bulge

According to the Department of Health’s latest predictions, more than 12 million adults and one million children will be clinically obese by 2010, if nothing is done to curb Britain ’s addiction to unhealthy living.  The cost implications...

Disfigurement and the DDA

According to a recent article in The Times, a pilot with Virgin Atlantic who was left facially disfigured and unable to fly after a car crash is suing Virgin for constructive dismissal and disability discrimination after allegedly being invited to apply for...

'D' Is For Disability Discrimination

The Basics of Disability Discrimination What is a disability? Employment law imposes a special test. If someone has a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long term adverse effect on their ability to carry out normal...

A Tale of Two Breaches: breach of a statutory right or obligation - does this amount to a breach of contract?

I am the HR manager of a medium sized company based in London .  One of our employees has claimed disability discrimination, stating that since the diagnosis of his rare medical condition we have not made sufficient reasonable adjustments to take...

The curse of the were-employee?

Dear Auntie One of my employees, Mr Wolfe, claims he was bitten by a dog on Halloween. He has since started scratching himself vigorously in the office, howling at clients and becoming anxious about the next full moon. This has obviously affected his...

Absence for IVF treatment - a delicate affair

I am the HR Manager of a large City organisation and I need your advice. One of our female employees, Ms Jones, is currently undergoing IVF treatment and consequently has to take a great deal of time off work to attend her appointments. It has now come to...

Do I need to make adjustments before a disabled employee starts work?

Dear Auntie I am an owner of a small company, which specialises in graphic design. I employ 10 people. I am looking to recruit a new employee to head up a team of 3 other employees and am in the process of recruiting. The best candidate based on the...