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Qualifying period remains uncertain

This report relates to 1 case(s)

The European Court of Justice's long-awaited ruling in R v Secretary of State ex parte Seymour-Smith leaves it for the House of Lords to decide whether the increase in the qualifying period in 1985 for bringing a complaint of unfair dismissal from one to two years indirectly discriminated against women contrary to European Community law.

On the key issue of whether the two-year rule had a disparate impact on women, the ECJ reiterates that it is for the national court to "verify whether the statistics available indicate that a considerably smaller percentage of women than men is able to fulfil the requirement".