Royal Bank of Scotland Plc v AB UKEAT/0266/18/DA & UKEAT/0187/18/DA

Appeal against the ET’s decision that the Respondent had unlawfully discriminated against the Claimant on grounds of disability. Appeal allowed in part.

The Claimant suffered significant injuries at the start of her employment with the Respondent, and those injuries caused her pain throughout her five-year employment and the pain affected her ability to work. Following a period of absence from work by reason of stress, she resigned. She brought a number of claims in the ET, including that she had been unfairly constructively dismissed and that she had suffered disability discrimination. The ET upheld her claims and, by its remedies judgment, awarded damages of around £4.5 million to the Claimant on the basis that her psychiatric symptoms, giving rise to the need for future care, had been caused by the discrimination. The Respondent appealed on a number of grounds, including that (1) the ET erred by failing to formally assess the Claimant's capacity to conduct the litigation and to give evidence, and by refusing to reconsider that decision, (2) the ET should have reduced the amount payable to the Claimant to take account of the possibility that her psychiatric condition would have occurred in any event, and (3) the ET failed to give sufficient reasons to explain why it preferred the evidence of one expert witness over another.

The EAT held that the ET's refusal to reconsider the decision that assessment of the Claimant's capacity to litigate was not necessary was irrational, but there was no need for any matter to be remitted to the ET for further consideration, and the order following the remedies hearing would stand. All of the other grounds of appeal failed.

Published: 04/03/2020 12:32

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