EAT Contract of Employment: Implied Term/Variation/Construction of Term – DISABILITY DISCRIMINATION – Reasonable adjustments
After the Claimant became disabled through a back injury the Respondent gave him work in a new role (‘key runner’) at his existing rate of pay and led him to believe that the role was long-term. The following year, however, it said that it was only prepared to employ him in this role at a reduced rate of pay; and when the Claimant refused to accept these terms he was dismissed.
It was argued by the Claimant that there was a variation of his contract entitling him to work as a key runner at his existing rate of pay. The Employment Tribunal found that there was no such variation. The Claimant cross-appealed on this point. The Employment Tribunal had rejected his case, at least in part, because it considered that an employer was entitled to impose an adjustment on an employee without the employee’s consent. This was an error of law.
However the Employment Tribunal went on to find that the Respondent was required, as a reasonable adjustment, to employ the Claimant as a ‘key runner’ at his existing rate of pay. The Respondent appealed on this question. The Employment Tribunal had been entitled to reach this conclusion. Appeal dismissed. O’Hanlon v Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs  ICR 1359 CA and Newcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust v Bagley UKEAT/0417/11 considered.
David Richardson HHJ
 UKEAT 0243 – 15 – 2608
England and Wales
Updated: 22 January 2022; Ref: scu.568718