Cottrell v Avon Cosmetics Ltd [2022] EAT 89

Appeal against the ET's decision not to reconsider their previous judgment dismissing the Claimant's claim after the Claimant had failed to comply with the requirement for ACAS early conciliation. Appeal dismissed.

The Claimant was dismissed and made claims against the agency who employed her, Echo, and Avon. The Claimant had obtained an ACAS early conciliation certificate in relation to Echo, but not Avon. On the claim form the Claimant used the EC certificate number for Echo in the box in which she should have given an EC certificate number for Avon. She was then informed by the ET that her claim had been accepted. Avon asserted in their response that the Claimant had failed to comply with the requirement for ACAS early conciliation in respect of the claim against them. The ET dismissed the claim against Avon (“the dismissal judgement”) but the claimant has not appealed against the dismissal judgment. The Claimant applied for reconsideration of the dismissal judgement (“the reconsideration application”). The reconsideration application asserted that the claim against Avon had been accepted by the ET’s letter so it was a “respondent” not a “prospective respondent” and alleged that the ET had acted improperly in rejecting the claim against Avon. The reconsideration application was rejected and the Claimant appealed.

The EAT dismissed the appeal. The reconsideration application did not raise any new matters that could result in the EJ revoking the rejection of the claim against Avon. The appeal was not allowed to proceed on the basis that the EJ should have decided on reconsideration that Avon was a valid Respondent to the proceedings; rather, the only ground that the appeal was permitted to proceed was that the EJ should have considered joining Avon as a party. This has been held to be permissible in cases such as Drake International v Blue Arrow [2016] ICR 445 and Mist v Derby Community Health Services NHS Trust [2016] ICR 543. However, that ground necessarily failed as the Claimant was adamant that she has not, and would not under any circumstances, applied for Avon to be added as a party.

Published: 20/06/2022 10:16

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