British Telecommunications Plc v Robertson (Discrimination Arising From Disability - Duty of Reasonable Adjustment) [2021] UKEAT 0229/20/0306

Appeal by respondent against finding of unfair dismissal and failure to make reasonable adjustments.

The Claimant was dismissed following a period of sickness absence. He issued proceedings in which he complained of unfair dismissal, discrimination arising from disability under section 15 Equality Act 2010 (“Equality Act”) and a failure to comply with the duty of reasonable adjustment under section 20. He claimed that he had three disabilities but the Tribunal found that only one of these amounted to a disability in fact and law.

In this judgment, HHJ Auerbach founds that the ET was wrong to uphold a complaint of discrimination arising from disability in respect of the dismissal as it had failed failed to consider, or make a finding about, whether the absence arose in consequence of the one condition which it found amounted to a disability. This point was remitted back to the Tribunal. The Tribunal also erred in upholding a complaint of failure to comply with the duty of reasonable adjustment by not allowing more time for the Claimant’s health to improve before dismissing him as it had failed to consider whether the PCP relied upon - which was said to be the application of the Respondent’s attendance procedure - had in fact been applied in this case. Given findings and conclusions elsewhere in the decision, if ET had considered the matter they would have been bound to conclude that the claimed PCP was not in fact applied.

Published: 16/08/2021 10:03

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