Employment law cases in the news – 10.07.2017 to 16.07.2017

In the latest of our series of posts on employment law cases in the news, we take a look at ten employment law cases that made headlines between 10 July and 16 July 2017

  1. UK Supreme Court backs pension rights for gay couples in landmark ruling – A retired businessman has won a landmark court ruling to secure equal pension benefits for his husband in a move which could have far reaching consequences for the pensions industry. John Walker, 66, brought a legal case to the Supreme Court in an attempt to secure the same pension rights upon his death for his husband as would have applied for a wife (The Financial Times)
  2. Caretaker wins €25,000 from Unite for unfair dismissal – A caretaker who worked for Unite the Union has been awarded €25,000 for unfair dismissal at the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC), in a case featuring allegations of “irregular” payments to staff through expenses and petty cash (The Times)
  3. Engineering firm fined after exposing workers to Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS) – An engineering firm has been fined for failing to control the risk to employees using hand held power tools from Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS). Manchester and Salford Magistrates heard how Newfield Fabrications Co Ltd (NFCL) failed to ensure the risks to its employees from exposure was adequately controlled (HSE)
  4. British Council manager who was sacked for a cruel rant at Prince George sues for ‘discrimination against her beliefs’ – A British Council manager who attacked Prince George as a symbol of ‘white privilege’ is suing her former employer amid claims that she was sacked over her republican beliefs (The Mail Online)
  5. Human rights boss rapped for ‘mistreating’ staff during sackings – A leading human rights advocate accused of “mistreating” a worker who recently returned from maternity leave has been condemned for behaving in a “way no reasonable employer would have acted” (Herald Scotland)
  6. Commerzbank Banker Says He Was Told to Shut Up on Compliance – A former Commerzbank AG executive said in a London employment lawsuit that he was told to “shut up,” harassed and eventually let go after he blew the whistle on corporate misconduct at the German lender (Bloomberg)
  7. Sacked Unite official goes to court seeking reinstatement – A union official who was sacked after challenging Len McCluskey for leadership of the Unite trade union is going to court on Thursday to demand his reinstatement. Lawyers for Gerard Coyne, who was suspended as a Unite regional secretary in April, will seek to use legislation which can be used to prevent people being sacked for trade union activities (The Guardian)
  8. Former council lawyer drops his tribunal case – A former senior lawyer at Wigan Council has struck a deal with his ex-colleagues after dropping a whistleblowing claim. Peter Hassett, the authority’s ex-principal solicitor, had lodged an employment tribunal case against the council, which was due to run for more than a week in Manchester (Wigan Today)
  9. Agency worker injures hand on lathe – firm sentenced – An engineering firm was sentenced today for safety breaches after a worker suffered injuries to his hand. Sheffield Magistrates’ Court heard that in September 2014 the injured person was employed by The Works agency (HSE)
  10. Cash-strapped Northumbria Police trying to get £500,000 legal costs out of former employee – A cash-strapped police force is trying to recover legal costs racked up in a bitter dispute that aired embarrassing accusations. Northumbria Police’s former legal chief, Denise Aubrey, took the force to an employment tribunal alleging she had been the victim of unfair dismissal after her 2014 sacking for gross misconduct (The Chronicle Live)