Workers win AWR Employment Tribunal

More than 150 Barnet Council workers are set to receive compensation, worth hundreds of thousands of pounds, after a decision by an Employment Tribunal on Tuesday (5 February).

Just weeks after a much reported tribunal case on the introduction of a Swedish Derogation contract (Bray & Others v Monarch Personnel Refuelling (UK) Limited) this second landmark Employment Tribunal hearing has judged that one of the lesser known provisions of the Agency Worker Regulations (AWR) – amendment of the rules about collective consultation and TUPE 2006 – had been breached.

The Employment Tribunal in Watford ruled that the Council failed to provide information on the number of agency workers employed by them, in breach of rules introduced under the AWR.

UNISON had asked for the information to protect council workers as part of a wider consultation over redundancies and the transfer of staff.

The case highlights the importance of seeking professional legal advice from experts who know the Agency Worker Regulations and their implications in depth.

Adrian Marlowe, MD of recruitment specialists, Lawspeed said: “This brings clearly into focus the fall-out that can arise if hirers do not comply with the AWR.

This comes at a time when many agencies are reporting difficulties in obtaining accurate information on comparable pay rates and holidays.”

The Tribunal made protective awards of 60 days’ and compensation of 40 and 50 days’ pay in respect of two transfers and a redundancy exercise that took place last year.

The Judge in the case described Barnet LBC’s refusal to provide information as “a relatively serious failure”. In a press release, UNISON said the decision, upholding the requirement to provide information on agency workers, has important ramifications for other unions, to help them negotiate more effectively and avoid redundancies.

To find out how to ensure that your business is compliant and protected from the risk of claims from workers and unions contact Lawspeed today. 01273 236 236


Ben Grover, Senior Legal Consultant, Lawspeed