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Cases

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This page does not apply outside Great Britain.

Many court decisions have a separate page on this website. These are listed below and on the following pages (see links at the bottom). A separate page lists only cases on stammering.

Follows v Nationwide Building Society

An employment tribunal held that a worker caring for her disabled mother could claim indirect disability discrimination when asked to give up home-working. This was even though it was the mother rather than the claimant who was disabled. However being only a tribunal case, it does not set a precedent….

Little Mix concert: case on BSL interpreters

The County Court held that organisers of a music concert had breached the reasonable adjustment duty by not arranging BSL interpreters for deaf audience members. 2021, County Court. Summary of judgment: Discrimination in access to events: is there a duty to provide live sign language interpretation at music concerts? (cloisters.com)…

R (VC) v Secretary of State for the Home Department

This appeal concerned reasonable adjustments for those with mental illnesses detained under the Immigration Act. The Court of Appeal held that the Secretary of State had failed to make reasonable adjustments, such as arranging advocates to assist mentally ill detainees in making representations about decisions to detain them. The court…

M v Ban-Car Hotel

The tribunal found the claimant was disabled within the Equality Act, by reason of her stammer and depression. However it held there was no discrimination, so her claim failed overall. 2021, Employment Tribunal. Full decision (pdf, gov.uk). (There are also earlier decisions (gov.uk) on applications to strike out the claim.)…

Elliot v Dorset County Council

The EAT stressed that in assessing whether the effect of an impairment is “substantial” under the Equality Act, the tribunal should start from the statutory wording of whether the effect is more than “minor or trivial”. The Guidance and Code of Practice do not add extra requirements; they should not…

O v TC Facilities Management

The claimant’s employment was terminated without notice due to his alleged “verbal and threatening behaviour towards management” at a meeting. Part of the problem was him speaking loudly and quickly at the meeting – he had a stammer which caused him to do this when trying to communicate under stress….

VL v Szpital Klinicnzy

The employer offered a monthly allowance to people who submitted a disability certificate after a certain date to encourage more people to do so, but not to those who had submitted one before that date. The EU Court held that less favourable treatment of some disabled people compared to other…

Uber v Aslam: self-employed workers

The Supreme Court held that Uber drivers (in London) were “workers” and therefore entitled to the national minimum wage, paid holiday and whistleblowing protection. The court downgraded the importance of written documents (controlled by the ’employer’) in deciding whether someone is a worker, and emphasised that employers cannot ‘contract out’…

Y v West Yorkshire Combined Authority

A claimant who stammers argued that the employer should have made further adjustments to an interview and presentation, for example expressly telling him he had extra time, follow-up questions where his answers were unduly short, and arrangements to enable him to keep eye contact. The tribunal held that on the…

Heskett v Secretary of State for Justice

The Court of Appeal upheld the “cost plus” principle, in the sense that saving or avoidance of costs will not without more amount to a ‘legitimate aim’ in seeking to justify discrimination. However this does not prevent an employer from relying on a legitimate aim of needing to reduce its…

Stammering case with impact statement, 2020

Below are an impact statement and other documents used in an employment tribunal case in 2020, arguing that the stammer (a severe one) was a disability within the Equality Act. Table of page contents DocumentsEmployer’s argumentsTribunal case management orderMy comments Documents The documents were not professionally drafted and aren’t presented…

Robinson v Department for Work and Pensions

An employment tribunal held that various failures by the employer, including delay in dealing with a grievance on disability, were unlawful ‘discrimination arising from disability’ (s.15 EqA). The Court of Appeal overturned the decision. The tribunal normally had to consider the employer’s thought processes in deciding whether the employer’s reason…

G v British Airways

The tribunal refused to allow a claimant to amend his claim to add disability discrimination related to stammering. From listening to him, the tribunal said there was a “discernible, very mild stammer” which the tribunal very much doubted was a disability. In any event, the sheer weight of evidence explaining…

C v Spencer & Arlington

The claimant was dismissed for various reasons including bullying and threatening colleagues. The employment tribunal rejected a claim he had a stammer which (he said) started in adulthood. He contended that the stammer was why he had raised his voice in a meeting, but he gave a different explanation at…

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20th anniversary of stammeringlaw, 1999-2019