Stuart Delivery Ltd v Augustine [2021] EWCA Civ 1514

Appeal against an EAT ruling which agreed with the ET that the Claimant was a worker. Appeal dismissed.

This appeal concerns the status of a courier delivering goods by moped. The ET held that the Claimant was a worker. Once the Claimant had signed up for a time slot during which he was to be available to deliver goods by moped, he was required to perform those services personally. Furthermore, the Claimant's ability to release a slot to other couriers via the Respondent's app was not a sufficient right of substitution to remove the obligation on the Claimant to perform his work personally. The EAT upheld that decision. The Respondent appealed to the Court of Appeal, contending that the ET erred in its understanding of the principles governing the circumstances in which the ability of a person to appoint a substitute to carry out the work means that the person is not under any obligation personally to perform the work. Consequently, it contended, the ET failed properly to consider whether the extent of the Claimant's right to use a substitute courier for one of his slots meant that he was not required to perform the work personally and so was not a worker for the purposes of the relevant legislation.

The Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal. The ET was entitled on the facts as found by it to conclude that the Claimant was a worker within the meaning of section 230(3)(b) of the Act and the other relevant legislation. The ET was entitled to conclude that he performed the courier services under a contract to do the work or provide the services personally and that the Respondent was not the client or customer of any business undertaking carried on by the Claimant.

Published: 25/10/2021 14:50

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