There is no rule of law, to suggest that a sole director and owner of majority of shareholding, could not be an employee of that company, and be entitled to a redundancy payment on the liquidation of the company. ‘If the tribunal considers that the contract is not a sham, it is likely to wish to consider next whether the contract, which may well have been labelled a contract of employment, actually gave rise to an employer/employee relationship. In this context, of the various factors usually considered relevant . . . the degree of control exercised by the company over the shareholder employee is always important. This is not the same question as that relating to whether there is a controlling shareholding. The tribunal may think it appropriate to consider whether there are directors other than or in addition to the shareholder employee and whether the constitution of the company gives that shareholder rights such that he is in reality answerable to himself and incapable of being dismissed.’
Gazette 10-Mar-1999, Gazette 27-Jun-1999,  EWCA Civ 781,  IRLR 120,  IRLR 326,  ICR 592,  BCC 177
Employment Rights Act 1996 213
England and Wales
Appeal from – Secretary of State for Trade and Industry v Bottrill EAT 28-May-1998
There is no rule of law to suggest that a sole director and owner of majority of shareholding could not be an employee and entitled to redundancy payment on the liquidation of the company. ‘The higher courts have taken the view that the issue as to . .
Cited – Bunting and Others v Hertel (Uk) Ltd EAT 28-Jun-2001
The appellants claimed to have been unfairly dismissed. They had been owners, through a discretionary trust, of a company sold to the respondents. They claimed also to have been employees. Following the sale, they were dismissed, and they asserted . .
Cited – Venables and others v Hornby (Her Majesty’s Inspector of Taxes) HL 4-Dec-2003
The company director taxpayer had retired from his company but stayed on as an unpaid non-executive director. The trust deed for the company’s pension scheme provided for payments to be made to an employee. The director sought relief from payment of . .
Cited – Ultraframe UK Limited v Clayton, Fielding and Others ChD 3-Oct-2002
The claimants asserted infringement of their registered design rights in parts used in their double glazing and conservatory units. ‘Therefore it is possible for design right to subsist in the design of the part of the article which is not excluded . .
Cited – Smith v Secretary of State for Trade and Industry EAT 15-Oct-1999
The claimant had been sole director of a company which went into liquidation. He sought a redundancy payment from the respondent under the 1996 Act. It was refused. The tribunal had applied Buchan. It had refused to hear an argument that the . .
Cited – Nesbitt v Secretary of State for Trade and Industry EAT 10-Aug-2007
EAT Contract of Employment – definition of employee
The Appellants were a husband and wife who entered into contracts of employment with a company which they managed and which they between . .
These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 19 May 2021; Ref: scu.135854