Actions of the Employee after a dismissal can be relevant!

In another case involving consideration of events after dismissal, Cumbria County Council & Anor v Bates, the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) held that where a teacher was convicted of common assault (involving a former pupil) and subsequently banned from teaching after he had already been dismissed, an employment tribunal would be entitled to consider the effect of the conviction when assessing compensation.

The teacher in question was dismissed in April 2009: a tribunal found that his dismissal was unfair in September 2010, by which time he had been arrested and his trial was pending. The council asked for the remedies hearing to be postponed until after his trial, but the tribunal refused, on the ground that it should disregard events which had taken place after dismissal when assessing compensation. On an appeal by the council, the EAT held that this was a misunderstanding of a previous decision on another case: while events after dismissal could not be considered as part of the decision regarding what compensation would be just and equitable, conviction and imprisonment would have an impact on a claimant’s future employment prospects, and on future pension loss, and so the case was sent to a new tribunal to consider compensation taking this into account.

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