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This week's case round-up from Eversheds, covering: entitlements to PHI benefits; and disability claims.
In Marlow v East Thames Housing Group Ltd, the High Court holds that where an employee is contractually entitled to benefits paid by insurers under a permanent health insurance policy with the employer, the employer is bound to take all reasonable steps to secure those benefits from the insurers. This could, depending on the circumstances, entail pursuing litigation against the insurers.
In Walton v Airtours plc and another, the Court of Appeal holds that an airline pilot who was unable to continue with his job after becoming ill with chronic fatigue syndrome, but was fit to undertake light part-time work with rehabilitation and a programme of support, remained entitled to benefits under the employer's PHI scheme, notwithstanding that those benefits were payable in the long term only if the employee was unable to "follow any occupation".
Recent decisions show that while Permanent Health Insurance is valuable for staff, it can damage your organisation. By Anthony Korn, a barrister at 199 Strand Chambers.
An employer was not entitled to withhold sick pay from an employee who took sick leave because of anxiety and depression immediately after being disciplined for misconduct, notwithstanding a contractual clause excluding such entitlement where sickness was "due, or attributable, to his own misconduct", the EAT holds in Manchester City Council v Thurston.
In London Clubs Management Ltd v Hood, the EAT holds that an employer's failure to continue to pay a disabled employee contractual sick pay for his sickness absences from work was not for a reason relating to his disability and so did not amount to discriminatory treatment under the statutory provisions.
HR and legal information and guidance relating to health-related benefits.