In Peninsula Business Service Ltd v Baker  IRLR 394 EAT, the EAT held that, for a claim of harassment to succeed in a case involving the protected characteristic of disability, it is not enough for the alleged harassment to be "related to" disability in a general sense. The claimant must actually have a disability to bring the claim.
Updated to include information on Charlesworth v Dransfields Engineering Services Ltd, in which the EAT held that the employee's disability-related absence was not the effective cause of the decision to dismiss.
The Employment Appeal Tribunal has held that an employee could not claim for harassment on the ground of disability where he had not proved, but merely asserted, that he has a disability.
This tribunal decision concerned a director who made dismissive comments about an employee's medical condition instead of considering whether or not she had a disability. The tribunal found the employer had constructive knowledge of the claimant's disability and the comments were discrimination arising from her disability.
Lauren Evans, Iain Naylor, David Rintoul, Lucy Sorell and Rachael Wake are associates at Addleshaw Goddard LLP. They round up the latest rulings.
A Northern Ireland tribunal has applied the European Court of Justice (ECJ) decision in FOA, acting on behalf of Karsten Kaltoft v Billund Kommune that obesity can by itself amount to a disability.
In a good example for line managers of inappropriate comments in a return-to-work interview, an employment tribunal has found that a sergeant's comments to a police officer returning to work after a stress-related absence constituted disability harassment.
This case is an example of an employer committing associative disability discrimination. The employer discriminated against an employee who required time off because her husband was seriously ill.
In this case, a job applicant questioned at an interview by a line manager about his history of mental illness in an insensitive and hostile manner was found to have been harassed. However, the applicant, who was ultimately not appointed to the job, was found not to have been discriminated against otherwise because in no sense whatsoever was his illness a factor in the company's failure to offer him the job.
HR and legal information and guidance relating to disability-related harassment.