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Employment Law Issues: Advising the Manager at Bhouse

Scenario a: Inaya's Potential Unfair Dismissal

You are a human resources adviser at Bhouse, a well-known firm of architectural and interior design in London. You are supposed to advise Chris, the manager at Bhouse, on the employment law issues raised by the three scenarios below (a), b) and c)). In order to do that, prepare a draft document which considers the employment law issues for each of the three scenarios as directed (and in light of the assessment criteria below in this document). Your answer should include references to relevant statutory provisions and case law.  
a) Inaya was employed as an accounts clerk by Bhouse for 5 years. In November 2021, she made a mistake in calculating the accounts. On discovering this, Chris, the manager, sent her a dismissal letter. She is very upset, particularly as she has been very ill lately and believes that the illness may have affected her concentration. Inaya feels that she should have had a proper disciplinary procedure, but Chris said that this would have made no difference to his decision as he no longer had faith in her ability.
Advise Chris as to whether: 
Inaya’s dismissal may be an unfair dismissal. In particular, consider whether Inaya satisfies the eligibility criteria for a claim of unfair dismissal; whether the reason for the dismissal might fall within one of the potentially ‘fair’ reasons for dismissal; and whether, applying the relevant test, the dismissal, as carried out in this case, can be considered fair/unfair. What are the remedies available to an employee in case of an unfair dismissal? 
b) Veronica has worked for many years at Bhouse as an interior designer. She is told by Chris that, as part of a restructuring exercise, she and other employees, will move to working online only. She is unhappy about this as she believes it will negatively affect the quality of her work. Chris has told her that unless she agrees, she will be dismissed. She has told Chris she would prefer to be made redundant like some other of her colleagues.   
Advise Chris as to whether:
Veronica might be entitled to a redundancy payment. In particular, consider whether Veronica satisfies the eligibility criteria for a redundancy claim; whether a redundancy situation might be present; and, if that is the case, whether Veronica is unreasonably refusing suitable alternative employment. How is a redundancy payment calculated? 
c) Eeshan works as a cleaner at Bhouse. He was never provided with a written contract. He is normally called in to work at weekends. Bhouse provides him with a uniform but Eeshan has to bring his own cleaning tools and products. There is an implicit understanding that he has to turn up for work when called and that he should not be sending a replacement. He has asked Chris to clarify his employment status. 
Advise Chris as to whether: 
Eeshan can be considered an ‘employee’. In particular, what is the test to establish whether a worker is an ‘employee’ and how would it apply in this case? What would be the implications of being an employee for Eeshan? 

Learning outcomes addressed in the assignment


1. Explain the core principles that underpin employment law in the UK (or Ireland), including common law, their purpose, origin and practical implications.

Thinking skill

5. Advise colleagues about significant legal implications of decisions, plans or proposals in the employment field.

6. Advise about the appropriate action that should be taken in workplace scenarios where employment regulation applies.

Subject-based practical skills

8. Play a leading role in determining the appropriate organisational response when legal action on the part of a worker or employee is anticipated, threatened or taken.

10. Participate in the preparation, presentation and settling of employment tribunal cases.

Skills for life and work (General skills).

11. Know how to keep their knowledge of developments in employment law up to date and advise about the impact of these developments on employment policy and practice in their organisations. (SID) and (CID).

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