Marks & Spencer Plc v Ryan, EAT, 10 September 2004

Internal appeals and time limits: Ryan was summarily dismissed, and the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) advised her to exhaust her employer’s internal appeals procedures.

Ryan’s tribunal complaint should have been made by 16 July 2003, but she did not hear of her appeal’s unsuccessful outcome until 31 July 2003. So she presented her complaint to the tribunal on 15 August 2003.

The tribunal found that it had not been reasonably practicable to present it within the three-month time limit, and that she had done so within a reasonable time thereafter. The employer appealed.

Its appeal was dismissed. The EAT held that the tribunal was entitled to find that Ryan believed she should wait for the outcome of the internal procedures before making a complaint to the tribunal because of advice she had received from the CAB.  

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