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Paying younger employees less is ongoing age discrimination

Leigh Day is representing a group of hospital workers

Photo: istock

27 July 2011

Leigh Day specialist employment lawyers are currently representing a group of hospital workers employed by Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust in their claims for age discrimination and equal pay.

Following an appeal in the Employment Appeal Tribunal brought by the Trust, the age discrimination claims will now proceed to a full hearing. The Employment Appeal Tribunal judgment can be found here.

Agenda for Change was the NHS-wide job evaluation scheme, which allocated each job to a pay band. In the case of our clients, Agenda for Change resulted in a re-grading to a transitional pay scale. The exact re-grading depended on the workers’ age, with older workers being placed on a higher salary, and this forms the basis of the claim of age discrimination. The Trust argued that the claims were out of time, as they should have been brought within three months of Agenda for Change being implemented. The Employment Judge decided that this argument was wrong, and there was a continuing act of discrimination each time the workers were paid less than their older colleagues.

Mr Justice Langstaff held that the employment judge had not clearly identified the act of discrimination and the continuing act in her judgment, and so the claims were remitted for reconsideration. Subsequently, the Trust’s arguments that the claims were out of time has been dismissed by the employment tribunal. The claims will now proceed to a final hearing.

Employment and discrimination specialist lawyers at Leigh Day have extensive experience in bringing all types of age discrimination claims, both in the public and private sector, and with individual  and multi-party claims. If having read this article, you would like to speak to a lawyer, please contact either Chris Benson or Michael Newman on 020 7650 1200.

Specialist employment lawyers

The team of specialist employment and discrimination lawyers at Leigh Day has experience in bringing all types of employment discrimination claims, both in the public and private sector, and with individual  and multi-party claims.  Partner Camilla Palmer represented journalist Miriam O’Reilly in her claim against the BBC for sex and age discrimination. The team is also representing deaf diplomat Jane Cordell in her disability discrimination claim against the Foreign Office.

Our employment solicitors have secured compensation for people bringing equal pay claims, sex discrimination claims, race discrimination claims and disability discrimination claims and regularly advise on claims for compensation relating to bullying at work, stress at work, whistle-blowing, maternity and paternity, and unfair dismissal.

Our employment solicitors are recognised by the two main legal directories, Legal 500 and Chambers guide to the legal profession, as being experts in their field with partner Camilla Palmer being described as being “widely respected for her work on female discrimination cases” and partner Chris Benson having a “wealth of experience in disability law”.  Leigh Day employment specialists have successfully represented a number of senior executives in their employment claims and also have experience of acting for groups of clients with similar claims.  The team is expert in advising on compromise agreements.

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