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How Chris Hadrill successfully represented a client in her claim for pregnancy and maternity discrimination in the Employment Tribunal on a ‘no win no fee’ basis and secured a settlement of £37,500.

The situation

Anna started work at a computer games company (“the Company”) in January 2013 and went on her first period of maternity leave in May 2015, returning to work in June 2016. Her maternity leave was paid on an enhanced basis, effectively meaning that she received six months’ full salary for her period of maternity leave (as well as her full complement of statutory maternity leave).

In September 2016 Anna discovered that she was pregnant and informed the Company of this fact; she said that she intended to go on maternity leave in February 2017. After she informed the Company of her pregnancy the owner of the Company (“AB”) started to make comments to her about the fact that she was due to take another long period of maternity leave on full pay, and started to become aggressive with Anna over minor issues.

In November 2016 the Company informed Anna that it was undertaking a redundancy exercise and that she might be dismissed from her employment as a result; she was then informed later in the month that she had been selected for redundancy (subsequent disclosure of documents relevant to the Employment Tribunal claim showed that Anna’s selection for redundancy had been pre-determined (i.e. that she had been chosen for redundancy before the process had started)). In December 2016 AB informed Anna that she was being dismissed for gross misconduct on the basis that she had allegedly tried to defraud the Company (allegations which Anna denied). Anna appealed her dismissal but AB refused to hear her appeal.

As a result of her dismissal Anna suffered from stress and depression. She was unable to get a job after she was dismissed and suffered a considerable loss of earnings as a result.

The law relating to pregnancy and maternity discrimination

Under the Equality Act 2010, employees can make a claim to the Employment Tribunal if they believe that they have been discriminated against or victimized because of their pregnancy or because they have taken, are taking or intend to take maternity leave (or, indeed, any other ‘protected characteristic’ (see this article for an explanation of what a ‘protected characteristic’ is). Potential claims include the following:

  • Section 13 Equality Act 2010 – to make a claim to the Employment Tribunal for direct pregnancy and maternity discrimination if they believe that they have been treated less favourably because they are pregnant or because they have taken, are taking or intend to take maternity leave (this would normally be a direct sex discrimination claim)
  • Section 18 Equality Act 2010 – to make a claim to the Employment Tribunal for pregnancy and maternity discrimination if they believe that they have been subjected to unfavourable treatment because they are pregnant or because they have taken, are taking or intend to take maternity leave (“pregnancy and maternity discrimination”)
  • Section 27 Equality Act 2010 – to make a claim to the Employment Tribunal for victimization if they believe that they have been subjected to a detriment because they have, for example, threatened to make a claim for pregnancy and maternity discrimination in the Employment Tribunal

Click on this link for a guide to pregnancy and maternity discrimination in the workplace

What we did

Chris Hadrill, a specialist employment solicitor at Redmans, represented Anna on a ‘no win no fee’ basis in her Employment Tribunal claim against her former employer, advising her to bring claims for pregnancy and maternity discrimination, victimisation, and unfair dismissal. Chris also advised Anna to seek compensation for loss of earnings, injury to feelings, aggravated damages, and personal injury.

Chris dealt with the procedure of the claim and represented Anna throughout the claim, dealing with the Employment Tribunal and negotiating the matter directly with the solicitors that the Company instructed it to help it defend the claim.

The result

The Company made a number of offers of settlement as the case proceeded, starting with an offer of £2,000, rising to £20,000, and then an offer of £37,500 eight weeks before Anna’s full merits hearing was due to commence at the Employment Tribunal. Settlement agreement terms were then agreed, under which Anna would receive the agreed sum of money and a reference (as well as the usual confidentiality and non-derogatory clauses).

Chris Hadrill, the employment solicitor who represented Anna in her matter, made the following comment on the case: “It was a pleasure to represent the client in this matter, and we were delighted with the outcome – employers must ensure that they treat pregnant employees fairly and they must not subject employees to detriments because they are pregnant or intend to exercise their legal right to maternity leave.”

Please note that all of the names used for clients and third parties in this article and all other articles are anonymised (unless expressly stated otherwise) to protect client confidentiality and in order to avoid breaching confidentiality clauses (if relevant)

About

Redmans Employment Team deal with employment matters for both employers and employees, including drafting employment contracts and policies, advising employers and employees on compromise agreements, handling day-to-day HR issues, advising on restructures, and handling Employment Tribunal cases for both employers and employees Call 020 3397 3603 to speak to one of the members of our employment team or email us on enquiries@redmans.co.uk. Redmans have offices in Richmond, Chiswick, Hammersmith, Fulham, Kingston, Wimbledon, Ealing, Kings Cross and Marylebone (meetings strictly by appointment only).

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Testimonials

4.70 Average

73 Reviews

Richard v

Excellent Service

Posted 1 week ago

Anonymous

Very happy from service received. Highly recommend

Posted 1 week ago

Colin W

Very professional and thorough. Sachs who dealt with the bulk of my case was excellent Thank you. .

Posted 1 week ago

Anonymous

I was generally impressed with the fast turn around, efficiency, responsiveness, and consideration of circumstances. I needed a couple of areas of advice quickly and with Redmans help was able to get to a conclusion quickly and with minimum stress. They were friendly and professional throughout - I'd use them again.

Posted 1 week ago

Anonymous

The guidance and assistance I recently received when using Redman's was fantastic. Caroline & Chris were both very informative and understanding walking me through each step. Thank you.

Posted 1 month ago

Nicola W

Fantastic service, very quick and efficient. Thank you

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

Excellent professional service.

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

As with All solicitors advice without consequence but understood and communicated my legal position

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

Prompt, professional and excellent service.

Posted 1 month ago

Dominic C

Excellent service, prompt and helpful

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

I found Redman’s to be very efficient and got me the best deal available in the short time scale that was available.

Posted 1 month ago

Victor L

Very professional. Provided excellent advice on my Settlement agreement.

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

Professional from start to finish.

Posted 1 month ago

Oliver W

Excellent service provided by Redmans, will certainly consider using again.

Posted 1 month ago

Melanie H

Very professional and extremely personable service. Thank you very much.

Posted 2 months ago

Anonymous

I found Chris to be very approachable and easy to speak with about complex matters. He took action quickly and his updates to me, as his client, were prompt. I would recommend Chris and the team at Redmans without hesitation.

Posted 2 months ago

Anonymous

Good advice

Posted 2 months ago

Anonymous

Overall happy with the service provided by Chris and Rana.

Posted 2 months ago

Anonymous

Chris and Rana provide a great service, very informed, diligent and care about your result, would recommend Redmans

Posted 2 months ago

David W

A speedy efficient friendly service, I would definitely recommend Redmans Solicitors for processing Settlement Agreements.

Posted 2 months ago

Anonymous

Both Rana and Chris were fantastic. From the first phone call I was confident my matter was in good hands. I was not disappointed. I would highly recommend Redmans. Thank you again for all of your support and advice.

Posted 2 months ago