Want to talk to an expert employment law solicitor?

You'll receive a callback from a specialist within an hour

In the case of Mr C Constandinou and Mr T Kakkoufa v Supadance International Ltd and Others: 3200222/2016 and 3200230/2016, the Employment Tribunal held that the dismissals of the Claimants were both unfair and discriminatory (due to their age), awarding them cumulatively a sum of almost £80,000 in compensation.

The facts in Mr C Constandinou and Mr T Kakkoufa v Supadance International Ltd and Others

Mr Constandinou and Mr Kakkoufa (“the Claimants”) were employed by Supadance International Ltd (Supadance), a business that specialises in the production and sale of specialist ballroom dancing shoes, and were long-standing employees (having, respectively 25 years’ and 41 years’ service respectively). Mr and Mrs Free were, respectively, Chairman and Managing Director of Supadance.

In 2014 Supadance experienced a drop in sales and in April 2015 Mr and Mrs Free decided to make redundancies in order to address the profitability of the business. In April 2015 there was a meeting at Mr Constandinou’s house which Mr Antoniou (General Manager) and the Claimants attended. This meeting was recorded covertly by the Claimants. In the meeting Mr Antoniou stated that it was probable that the Claimants would be made redundant as they were high earners and that they were being talked about by Mr and Mrs Free as being first on the list for redundancies. The following comments were also made by Mr Antoniou in the meeting:

  • “the other thing as well when we put these five people forward we think they are not going to turn around and say why aren’t you sacking the older ones”
  • “if they are looking at the future another five or ten years in front really is the older ones that goes”

On 25 May 2015 Mr Neo Constandinou, Mr Constandinou’s son, was in the car with Mr Antoniou and there was a discussion between the two. Neo Constandinou stated that Mr Antoniou compared the factory’s workforce to a football team and said old workers like old football players need to leave so that it could bring in new blood otherwise the team would not be efficient.

On 18 August 2015 the Claimants were called to a further meeting in which they were informed that they were being made redundant. Again, this meeting was recorded. There was no prior notification provided to the Claimants that they were at risk of redundancy, and the transcript of the meeting made it clear that Mr and Mrs Free had been actively involved in the decision to make them redundant. In that meeting the Claimants asked what they were supposed to live on now and were, in return, asked by Mrs Free whether they could draw a pension yet. The Claimants worked their 12-week notice period to November 2015.

The Claimants subsequently brought claims in the Employment Tribunal for unfair dismissal, direct age discrimination, and holiday pay.”

The decision of the Employment Tribunal (ET)

The Employment Tribunal upheld the Claimants’ claims for unfair dismissal and direct age discrimination.

Unfair dismissal

The Employment Tribunal held that the Claimant’s dismissal was for the reason of redundancy,  but that their dismissal was unfair – there had been no procedure followed, no consultation, and no consideration of alternatives.

Direct age discrimination

The Employment Tribunal drew inferences that the Claimants’ dismissals may have been discriminatory from the following facts: Mr Antinou’s comments in April 2015 and May 2015, Mr Free’s pensions remark in August 2015, and Mrs Free’s evidence suggesting that she regarded previous redundancies as retirements. The Employment Tribunal further held that at least part of the reason for the way in which the Claimants had been treated was their age, and that there was no suitable alternative explanation to the way they had been treated.

Remedy

The Employment Tribunal awarded the Claimants a total 0f £74,023.51, divided as follows:

  • Mr Constandinou: £33,647.68 (comprised of £20,583.84 in respect of injury to feelings and £13,063.84 in respect of financial loss)
  • Mr Kakkoufa: £40,375.83 (comprised of £20,583.84 in respect of injury to feelings and £17,446.40 in respect of financial loss)

Our solicitors’ views on the case of in Mr C Constandinou and Mr T Kakkoufa v Supadance International Ltd and Others

Chris Hadrill, the partner in the employment department at Redmans, made the following comment on the case: “Employers should ensure that they undertake fair, reasonable, and reasoned redundancy processes – a failure to do so can be costly, as in this case.”

The decision of the Employment Tribunal in Mr C Constandinou and Mr T Kakkoufa v Supadance International Ltd and Others can be found here (liability) and here (remedy).

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).

Want to talk to an expert employment law solicitor?

You'll receive a callback from a specialist within an hour

Share →

Our awards

Request a callback

Your name

Your email

Your telephone number

Contact us

Please feel free to discuss your own position and concerns. Contact your nearest office on:

T: 020 3397 3603
E: enquiries@redmans.co.uk
W: www.redmans.co.uk

Testimonials

4.70 Average

73 Reviews

Richard v

Excellent Service

Posted 6 days ago

Anonymous

Very happy from service received. Highly recommend

Posted 6 days ago

Colin W

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

Posted 6 days 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