Sejpal v Rodericks Dental Limited [2022] EAT 91

Appeal against a finding that the Claimant was not a worker. Appeal allowed.

The Claimant was a dentist and started working as an "Associate" at the Respondent’s Oxford practice in August 2009. In 2010 she moved to the Kensington practice. The Claimant’s final contract with the Respondent was an "Associate Contract" dated 20 January 2013. The Claimant commenced a period of maternity leave in December 2018. At about this time the Respondent announced that the Kensington practice would close on expiry of the lease for its premises on 31 December 2018. The Claimant asserted that her contract was terminated, whereas others were redeployed and asserted that the termination of her contract was discrimination because of pregnancy or maternity. The ET rejected her claim that she was a worker which meant that she was unable to pursue her other claims. The Claimant appealed.

The EAT allowed the appeal for a number of reasons, including a conclusion that there was mutuality of obligations, contrary to what the ET had said, and the ET should have properly considered whether the Claimant was required to provide some personal service to the Respondent on a realistic assessment of the true agreement between the parties, by application of the statutory test. Some matters were decided by the EAT and some were remitted to a fresh ET.

Published: 15/08/2022 09:39

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