Mr Charlesworth, a branch manager, took a period of sick leave after developing cancer. His employer had been looking to make cost savings, and during Mr Charlesworth’s absence the business identified the possibility of a restructure that would delete his job and save the business up to £40,000 a year.
In most unfair dismissal cases, an employer will put its dismissing officer and its appeal officer in the witness box. It makes sense to give the tribunal a full account of what happened at each stage and why. But this case shows that a fair dismissal may be found even where the appeal officer does not give evidence.
This case centered on the question of whether or not an employer has to prove culpability in a conduct dismissal case.
Mr Ktorza was an executive director on the foreign exchange desk of the bank. He had received two final written warnings, the second of which was still live at the time he was disciplined for a practice called ‘short-filling’ or ‘partial-filling’, which means not (initially, at least) carrying out a client’s order in full.
The Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations, known as TUPE, take care of employees’ rights when, broadly speaking, ownership of the business they work for, or the service they provide, changes hands. An employee can object to the transfer, which will have the effect of terminating their employment contract on the transfer date. That termination will not count as ‘dismissal’ for employment law purposes.
Mr Peel and Mr Birtwistle were the Technical Manager and the Technical Sales Manager respectively at MPT Group (MPT). They resigned. Almost immediately after their six-month restrictive covenants expired, they and some others incorporated a company called MattressTek Limited – a business that would be in direct competition with MPT.