Hindle Gears Ltd v McGinty: EAT 1985

During a strike, employers were exempt from unfair dismissal claims only if they dismissed an entire striking workforce. They were not entitled to dismiss only those strikers who were ‘unwanted elements’. So if there were striking employees who were not dismissed, or who were re-engaged within three months, those who were dismissed could bring claims. The employer sent out letters dismissing all the strikers, but two of them had left home to report for work early in the morning of the day after the letters were posted, before the letters were actually received. The Industrial Tribunal held that the two employees had been dismissed but then re-engaged that morning, with the result that the 39 striking employees could bring complaints of unfair dismissal.
Held: The EAT (Waite J presiding) held that the two employees had not been dismissed before they returned to work; therefore they had not been re-engaged that morning; and they were not part of the striking workforce on the relevant date. This was because, at p 117:
‘Communication of the decision in terms which either bring it expressly to the attention of the employee or give him at least a reasonable opportunity of learning of it is in our view essential.’
Waite J
[1985] ICR 111
England and Wales
FollowedBrown v Southall and Knight EAT 1980
The employee had gone on holiday at the time when the letter of dismissal arrived at his home and he did not actually see it until he had returned from his holiday.
Held: The ‘effective date of termination’ is a statutory concept which focuses . .

Cited by:
CitedNewcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust v Haywood SC 25-Apr-2018
Notice of dismissal begins when received by worker
The court was asked: ‘If an employee is dismissed on written notice posted to his home address, when does the notice period begin to run? Is it when the letter would have been delivered in the ordinary course of post? Or when it was in fact . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 19 July 2021; Ref: scu.666010