Employment Relationship in UK Law

Leading Cases
  • Malik and Mahmud v Bank of Credit and Commerce International SA
    • House of Lords
    • 12 Jun 1997

    I can see no justification for the law giving the employee a remedy if the unjustified trust-destroying conduct occurs in some ways but refusing a remedy if it occurs in others. The conduct must, of course, impinge on the relationship in the sense that, looked at objectively, it is likely to destroy or seriously damage the degree of trust and confidence the employee is reasonably entitled to have in his employer.

    The evolution of the term is a comparatively recent development. The reason for this development is part of the history of the development of employment law in this century. The notion of a "master and servant" relationship became obsolete. A striking illustration of this change is Scally to which I have already referred where the House of Lords implied a term that all employees in a certain category had to be notified by an employer of their entitlement to certain benefits.

  • Lewis v Motorworld Garages Ltd
    • Court of Appeal
    • 01 Ago 1985

    On the other hand it is now established that the repudiatory conduct may consist of a series of acts or incidents, some of them perhaps quite trivial, which cumulatively amount to a repudiatory breach of the implied term of the contract of employment that the employer will not, without reasonable and proper cause, conduct himself in a manner calculated or likely to destroy or seriously damage the relationship of confidence and trust between employer and employee: see Woods v. W.M.Car Services (Peterborough) Ltd. [1981] ICR 666 in the Employment Appeal Tribunal.

    (c) The breach of this implied obligation of trust and confidence may consist of a series of actions on the part of the employer which cumulatively amount to a breach of the term, though each individual incident may not do so. In particular in such a case the last action of the employer which leads to the employee leaving need not itself be a breach of contract; the question is, does the cumulative series of acts taken together amount to a breach of the implied term?

  • Western Excavating (ECC) Ltd v Sharp
    • Court of Appeal
    • 14 Nov 1977

    If theemployer is guilty of conduct which is a significant breach going to the root of the contract of employment; or which shows that the employer no longer intends to be bound by one or more of the essential terms of the contract; then the employee is entitled to treat himself as discharged from any further performance. If he does so, then he terminates the contract by reason of the employer's conduct.

  • Walls Meat Company Ltd v Khan
    • Court of Appeal
    • 24 Oct 1978

    The performance of an act, in this case the presentation of a complaint, is not reasonably practicable if there is some impediment which reasonably prevents, or interferes with, or inhibits, such performance.

  • Abernethy v Mott, Hay and Anderson
    • Court of Appeal
    • 06 Feb 1974,06 Feb 1974

    A reason for the dismissal of an employee is a set of facts known to the employer, or it may be of beliefs held by him, which cause him to dismiss the employee. He may knowingly give a reason different from the real reason out of kindness or because he might have difficulty in proving the facts that actually led him to dismiss; or he may describe his reasons wrongly through some mistake of language or of law.

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