Case round up in brief

This month’s case round up news in brief

Damages for injury to feelings in
whistleblowing cases

Boyle was a teacher who successfully claimed unfair dismissal
for whistleblowing. He was awarded £45,000 in compensation for injury to
feelings. The EAT reduced the award, ruling that it was disproportionately
high. The EAT stressed that awards of compensation in whistleblowing cases
should match the scale of damages for injury to feelings in discrimination
cases. The EAT confirmed that aggravated damages could be awarded in
whistleblowing claims, awarding an additional £10,000.

Virgo Fidelis Senior School v Boyle, EAT

Liability for injury to feelings
for race discrimination not dependent on forseeability

Essa was a builder subjected to a single, but highly offensive,
racial insult by his foreman. An employment tribunal found that Essa had
overreacted to the remark, allowing the incident to "poison his mind"
to an extent where he was unable to look for work and suffered depression. He had
also taken himself off medication prescribed by his doctor and delayed for six
months in arranging counselling suggested by his doctor. Laing argued that
Essa’s reaction was so extreme it was unforeseeable, and it should not be
liable in damages for his injured feelings. The Court of Appeal rejected this
argument. Laing was liable for the consequences of the discriminatory act and
damages in discrimination cases did not depend on forseeability. However, the
case was remitted to the employment tribunal to consider whether Essa’s action
constituted a failure to mitigate his loss.

Laing
v Essa, EAT

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