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Nicholas Bidnell-Edwards secured a substantial increase to an injury to feelings award for a victim of maternity discrimination

After Mr Bidnell-Edwards had proved a case of maternity discrimination, the Employment Judge at South London Employment Tribunal made an injury to feelings award of £10,000.00, which then increased by more than 50% to £15,332.19 as a result of i) a 10% increase for the Simmons v. Castle award; ii) a 25% uplift for breaches of the ACAS Code; and iii) interest at 8% from the date of the discriminatory dismissal. In Naraine v. Smart Medical Clinics Ltd (Claim No. 2301156/2016) the Respondent had denied it had dismissed the Claimant i) because of the Claimant’s pregnancy; ii) because of the Claimant’s pregnancy-related illness; and iii) because she was seeking to exercise her right to exercise maternity leave. Nicholas Bidnell-Edwards proved that the dismissal of the Claimant had been for all three reasons.

At the remedies’ hearing Mr Bidnell-Edwards sought a middle level Vento award, an uplift for breach of the ACAS Code, together with interest applied to the whole of the uplifted sum. Employment Judge Elliott awarded a middle Vento band award of £10,000.00, which was then uplifted by 10% for the Simmons v. Castle award, applying the recent decision of De Souza v. Vinci Construction (UK) Ltd [2017] IRLR 84. The Judge accepted Mr Bidnell-Edwards’ submissions and awarded the full 25% uplift for breach of the ACAS Code, and added interest at the rate of 8% to the total, uplifted amount from the date of discrimination. This led to a more than 50% increase of the original award for injury to feelings amounting to £15,332.19. The Claimant also recovered her loss of earnings with interest, also at the rate of 8% for the relevant period of time so that the grand total awarded was £29,821.36.