Employment Bulletin - June 2020

Coronavirus: Updated COVID-19 in the workplace FAQs

What are the updates to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS)?

Under the CJRS eligible UK employers will be able to access government support to continue paying their employees who would otherwise have been laid off because of the coronavirus crisis – designated employees will be “furloughed workers”. An overview of the scheme can be found here.

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Coronavirus: Updated COVID-19 FAQs for employers who are sponsorship licence holders

Can a sponsored worker’s start date be delayed if they are unable to come to the UK?

Ordinarily, a Tier 2 worker’s start date can be delayed by up to 28 days from the date their visa was granted. However, due to travel restrictions currently in place, this may not be possible for many visa holders. 

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TUPE: Contract variations beneficial to an employee in anticipation of a TUPE transfer held to be void - Ferguson and others v Astrea Asset Management Ltd 2020

The transferring employees amended their own contracts to include substantial benefits before the TUPE transfer. The Employment Appeals Tribunal (‘EAT’) held that, despite the variations being beneficial to the employees, they were void as they were made by reason of the transfer.

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Redundancy: EAT provides guidance on when competitive interview process can be used when considering employees for alternative employment - Gwynedd Council v Barrett

Two teachers were made redundant following the reorganisation of schools in the local area. When considering applications for alternative employment, the Respondent used a competitive interview process rather than a selection / scoring process. The Employment Appeals Tribunal (‘EAT’) has provided useful guidance on the use of such a process.

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Marriage discrimination: EAT decides whether dismissal of a Minister based on the breakdown of his marriage can amount to direct marriage discrimination- Gould v St John's Downshire Hill

The Employment Appeals Tribunal (‘EAT’) has upheld the decision of the Employment Tribunal (‘ET’) that the dismissal of a Church Minister, which related to the breakdown of his marriage, was not marriage discrimination and further confirmed the circumstances in which it could be.

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Settlement Agreements: High Court holds that breach of confidentiality clause within COT3 did not bring the agreement to an end- Duchy Farm Kennels Limited v Graham William Steels

The High Court has held that a confidentiality clause within a COT3 was not a condition of the agreement, but rather a ‘generic clause’. The employer was not therefore able to terminate the agreement following a breach of this clause.

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The law and practice referred to in this article or webinar has been paraphrased or summarised. It might not be up-to-date with changes in the law and we do not guarantee the accuracy of any information provided at the time of reading. It should not be construed or relied upon as legal advice in relation to a specific set of circumstances.

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