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£35,000 award to pregnant employee who raised concerns over long working hours

Makbool Javaid

In Peart v Care Preference Limited, an ET upheld P’s claim that she had been unfairly dismissed for asserting her  statutory rights under the Working Time Regulations 1998 and because of her pregnancy. P’s contract stated she would work “no more than 48 hours per week averaged over a 17-week period” and that she should be available, ‘on call’, to participate in emergency cover arrangements. After becoming pregnant P complained that due to on call requirements, she was working in excess of 48 hours per week on average. The ET found that the principal reason for P’s dismissal was her proposal that she would no longer work average hours in excess of the Working Time Regulations limit. The fact that she also alleged that it was illegal for her as a pregnant woman to be required to work more than 48 in a week meant the pregnancy and the refusal were indivisible, and so pregnancy was a material influence or effective cause of the dismissal. The ET awarded P £35, 924.95.

The updates are kindly provided by Simons Muirhead & Burton Law firm

This update provides summary information and comment on the subject areas covered. Where employment tribunal and appellate court cases are reported, the information does not set out all of the facts, the legal arguments presented and help judgments made in every aspect of the case. Click on the links to access full details. If no link is provided, contact us for more information.  Employment law is subject to constant change either by statute or by interpretation by the courts. While every care has been taken in compiling this information, SM&B cannot be held responsible for any errors or omissions. Specialist legal advice must be taken on any legal issues that may arise before embarking upon any formal course of action.

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