Want to talk to an expert employment law solicitor?

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

This post will address a recent article in the Cambridge News regarding the unfair dismissal of Dr Kapur, a medical consultant at Cambridge University Hospital NHS Trust.

The facts of Dr Kapur’s unfair dismissal case

Dr Kapur commenced employment with the Cambridge University Hospital NHS Trust (“the hospital”) in 2003 as a medical consultant. At the time of his dismissal he was employed as head of the hospital’s neuropsychology department .

Dr Kapur’s problems commenced, he stated, after he complained to senior staff at the Trust about unsupervised and under-qualified staff treating patients at the hospital. He believed that this caused his dismissal in 2010. The Trust, on the other hand, claimed that Dr Kapur’s dismissal was a result of a chronic breakdown of mutual trust and confidence between Dr Kapur and the management at the hospital.

The law relating to unfair dismissal and whistleblowing

Under s.94 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 employees have the right not to be unfairly dismissed by their employers. The employer has to show a potentially fair reason applies for any dismissal (in this case, some other substantial reason) and that the dismissal was procedurally and/or substantively unfair. In order for a dismissal to be procedurally fair the employer must take certain steps to ensure that it has used a fair and objective procedure to collect, analyse and deliberate upon the correct outcome in the disciplinary procedure. A  fair investigation must be carried out, the employee must be able to put their case, the employee should be allowed to appeal, and the employee must be treated fairly and consistently (among other things). The employer should also make a decision to dismiss that is within the range of reasonable responses in the circumstances, in that it conducts a reasonable investigation, it makes an honest decision, and makes a genuine decision.

The Employment Tribunal’s decision in Kapur v Cambridge University Hospital NHS Trust

The Employment Tribunal decided that the hospital was liable for unfair dismissal in the circumstances. However, the decision that he was unfairly dismissed was premised upon a breach of mutual trust and confidence rather than because Dr Kapur had engaged in whistleblowing at the hospital. The Employment Tribunal did not consider that the whistleblowing was the reason for Dr Kapur’s dismissal. It considered that the Human Resources team for the hospital had manipulated the investigation carried out into Dr Kapur’s conduct by coaching witnesses and using Dr Kapur’s computer without authorisation, determining that the investigation and subsequent disciplinary was therefore reduced to a “show trial” and became “meaningless”. The dismissal was therefore found to be procedurally unfair. However, the decision was (it is believed) not found to be substantively unfair as the persons considering the facts of Dr Kapur’s case would have had (it is assumed) no knowledge of the Human Resources Department’s misconduct. Dr Kapur’s compensation was, in the event, subject to a 75% reduction because of his conduct prior to and during the disciplinary procedure (“contributory fault”).

Our specialist employment lawyers’ thoughts on Dr Kapur’s case

Incidents of this nature are believed to be rather unusual but personal opinions of members of staff can, more often than not, distort the outcome of investigations and disciplinary procedures. However, it’s rare that such a systematic attempt to undermine a member of staff occurs and is quite clearly an egregious case of unfair procedure.

Tagged with →  

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

4.73 Average

93 Reviews

Mohamed F

Excellent and professional solicitors, highly recommended

Posted 18 hours ago

Anonymous

Redmans Solicitors provided a professional and prompt service in dealing with my settlement agreement. They used their experience to negotiate a better deal for which I am grateful for. I highly recommend their services.

Posted 3 days ago

Cheryl R

Very efficient and friendly lawyers. I have used Redmans twice now and Chris Hadrill has been amazing to work with. Would highly recommend Redmans.

Posted 3 days ago

Anonymous

I found Redmans Solicitors to be extremely professional, dealing with my questions and concerns quickly and in detail. I would have no hesitation in recommending Redmans Solicitors to anyone.

Posted 3 days ago

Anonymous

I requested Redmans services on a redundancy case. Both Chris and Rana were great, thoughtful, very professional and responded quickly. They were very clear throughout the entire process, regarding the process and my options and I couldn't feel I had better legal advice for my case. Overall excellent service and I would certainly recommend and use their services again.

Posted 1 week ago

Anonymous

Responsive, patient, thorough and personable - an excellent service.

Posted 1 week ago

Anonymous

The team at Redmans, Chris Hadrill and Sacha Barrett were always very helpful and had expert knowledge to assist me during my employment law matter, I would not hesitate to recommend them to all!

Posted 1 week ago

Arun T

Chris was punctual, attentive and accurate. He answered my questions with clarity and avoided dubiosity. I would recommend him to anyone seeking legal advice within his remit.

Posted 1 week ago

Yulian Z

Great service

Posted 1 week ago

Anonymous

Excellent, professional service and a speedy resolution. Many thanks

Posted 1 week ago

Taral P

Sacha and Chris were both very helpful in closing out my matter. Sacha was very clear in helping me understanding the documents I needed reviewing, providing a professional service throughout.

Posted 1 week ago

Anonymous

Really pleased with the swift and professional service from Redmans. They provided very clear advice and helped conclude my matter with the minimum of stress or delay.

Posted 1 week ago

Matthew L

Redmans were very quick to respond to my initial enquiry, and provided me with a very effective and efficient service, generating a most satisfactory outcome. I would definitely use them again if the need arose.

Posted 1 week ago

Anonymous

First rate service. Warm and friendly whilst exceptionally efficient at the same time. I would highly recommend them.

Posted 1 week ago

Anonymous

Professional and helpful. Thorough and supportive.

Posted 1 week ago

Richard A

Excellent service, prompt replies, great advice

Posted 1 week ago

Anonymous

Very professional services

Posted 1 week ago

Margaret

Redmans Solicitors took a lot of the worry away and were very thoughtful and meticulous in their dealings with my case , thank you very mush , great service and a great job

Posted 1 month ago

Mark B

Prompt efficient service. Hourly, and part thereof, billing got a bit stressful at times - as opposed to flat fee - made me think twice about sending an email or making a quick call when I had a query because it would have eaten up minutes from my budget. But happy with the legal service I received overall and would recommend.

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

Chris Hadrill has provided a truly wonderful service and was willing to lend his support and expertise at a time when other solicitors, only wanted to discuss their fees! A clear thinking and down to earth professional, Chris can be trusted to listen carefully to your matter, cut through the fog, and advise you on the best (and most realistic) way forward, saving you time, money and heartache. It will be helpful if you first get your ducks in a row in terms of documents / evidence etc. and then contact Chris, (that’s what we did) as this will help your matter to be dealt with faster. The more organised and together you are the more successful you will be. You'll be fine with Chris, I highly recommend him. Good luck!

Posted 1 month ago

Richard v

Excellent Service

Posted 2 months ago