ACAS Early Conciliation – Ensure the correct Respondent is identified!
18 July 2017 #Employment Tribunals
In Giny v SNA Transport Limited, the Claimant brought several claims in the ET against his former employer. Before issuing his ET1 claim form, he contacted ACAS to commence early conciliation. At this stage, he incorrectly identified his employer as Mr Ahmed (the sole director of the company) rather than SNA Transport, although he did provide the correct address. When (after taking legal advice) he correctly identified SNA Transport as the Respondent in the ET1, the ET rejected the claim. Mr Giny appealed to the EAT, on the basis that under the ET Rules, the tribunal may accept claims where it considers there has only been a “minor error” and may then only reject the claim if in the interests of justice to do so.
The EAT felt that using the name of the director rather than the company “was not a minor error,” so there was no need to move on to the second (“interests of justice”) stage for rejecting a claim. Consequently, the appeal was rejected.
While tribunals have previously permitted claims where there is a minor difference in the Respondent’s identity in the EC certificate and ET1, this case highlights the importance of ensuring the correct Respondent is identified from the outset.
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