Case roundup

This week’s case roundup

Request for discovery granted
Knight v Department of Social Security, IRLR Vol 31 (4) 2002, EAT

Knight brought a disability discrimination claim against the DSS acting in
person. He sought to discover details relating to a test undertaken by him and
other disabled candidates for administrative posts with the Benefits Agency
including the test questions used, answer papers of the successful candidates
as well as his own answer papers. The tribunal ordered that these be disclosed
only to the tribunal itself to ascertain whether or not the tests had been
correctly marked. Knight appealed.

The EAT upheld his appeal and ruled that an applicant is entitled to see any
document relevant to his complaint which his opponent is placing before the
tribunal and which that tribunal is taking into account in reaching its
decision.

It stated that in a case where the applicant is likely to be representing
himself, it is desirable to bring the provisions of rule 31.22 of the Civil
Procedure Rules into play which set out that if a document is disclosed to a
party, it may be used only for the purposes of the proceedings in which it is
disclosed.

The EAT rejected the DSS’ sub-mission that the test questions were
confidential and that it would have to incur costs of around £150,000-£200,000
in setting a new test. The EAT held that confidentiality by itself is not a
basis for refusing relevant documentation. While cost is a material matter, the
EAT ruled in the overall context of this case it should not deprive Knight of
disclosure.

Holiday pay calculation correct
Leisure Leagues UK Ltd v Maconnachie, All ER (D) 223 EAT

In proceedings before the tribunal it was decided that there were eight days
accrued holiday pay due to Maconnachie worth around £280.00. This sum was based
on a calculation of a daily rate of pay taking 233 days as the relevant number
of working days in a year. Leisure League appealed the finding on the ground
that 365 days was the appropriate number of days for the calculation of the
daily sum.

The appeal was dismissed. It was the strong view of the tribunal’s lay
majority members that the approach as argued by Leisure League was at odds with
the virtual universal practice in industry which was to calculate holiday pay
by reference to a day’s work rather than calendar days per year. It was
noticeable that provisions found in the Working Time Regulations 1998 and the
Employment Rights Act 1996 took as their working assumptions the hours actually
required to be done, not the number of hours in a 24-hour day or a seven-day
week.

Accordingly, the day-to-day accrual for the purposes of calculating payment
for accrued holiday entitlement must be by reference to the number of working
days in the year and not the number of calendar days in the year.

Comments are closed.