Catherine appears for both claimants and respondents in the Employment Tribunal, with clients including local authorities, schools and universities, hotels, private companies of all sizes, and charities. She undertakes all types of employment work, from advising on the merits of a claim to drafting documents, from attending preliminary hearings through to multi-day final hearings at tribunals around the country – and, since the coronavirus pandemic, by video link.
In particular, she has experience of ‘ordinary’ and automatically unfair dismissal; redundancy; whistleblowing; discrimination based on sex, race, pregnancy and maternity, religion and belief, age, and disability, including hearings to determine disability status; disputes over employment status; and interim relief. She regularly acts for clients in judicial mediations and is experienced in drafting and advising on settlement agreements.
Catherine feels strongly that there is little support for litigants bringing employment claims who do not have funding (such as through insurance or their trade union). Employment tribunals can be confusing places and employment law can be complex. So for the past two years, Catherine has regularly volunteered at the Employment Tribunal Litigant in Person Support Scheme (ELIPS) at Central London Employment Tribunal, which assists litigants who cannot afford representation.
Catherine also regularly writes articles, and present seminars in-house at solicitors’ firms, on aspects of employment law. Recent topics include: getting the best evidence from your witness; how to deal with covert recordings; managing long-term sickness absence; and an update on discrimination on the basis of religion or philosophical belief.
Her recent employment work includes:
- Unnamed v Governing Body of the Bishop of Llandaff Church in Wales High School. The case involved allegations of sexual misconduct which were peripheral to the issues that the Tribunal had to determine, so this unfair dismissal hearing began with a complex ‘Rule 50’ application for a restricted reporting order.
- T v Travelodge Hotels Limited. Catherine regularly represents Travelodge. A significant feature of this constructive unfair dismissal claim was the Claimant’s reliance on covert recordings, and the arguments about whether they should be allowed into evidence.
- S v C Ltd. Catherine appeared for the Claimant in this seven-day trial at Southampton Employment Tribunal in which she succeeded on claims of discrimination and harassment on the grounds of sex and disability. The Respondent’s application for a reconsideration was also defeated.
- C v AMS Ltd, Leeds ET. A five-day hearing in which Catherine defended the Respondent, a legal services provider, from claims of race and disability discrimination. There was extensive consideration of reasonable adjustments concerning the Respondent’s sick leave policy.
- F v Industrial Dwellings Society 1885. Catherine acted successfully for the Respondent, a social housing provider, at this four-day hearing at Watford Employment Tribunal, defending claims of unfair dismissal and race discrimination.
- P v Randox Health Checks Ltd. Catherine defeated leading counsel to win this six-day constructive dismissal claim.
- K v Moulsham High School Academy Trust. Catherine successfully defended a school from numerous whistleblowing claims in a nine-day hearing brought by a former teacher.
- O v Travelodge Hotels Limited: Another Travelodge case for Catherine and a hard-fought, nine-day race discrimination claim with numerous issues and witnesses ended in victory for her client.