Source: All England Reporter
Publisher Citation: [2012] All ER (D) 229 (Oct)
Neutral Citation: [2012] UKSC 47
Court: Supreme Court

Lady Hale, Lord Wilson, Lord Sumption, Lord Reed and Lord Carnwath

Representation Andrew Short QC and Naomi Ling (instructed by Leigh Day & Co) for the claimants.
  Paul Espstein QC, Louise Chudleigh and Nathan Caiden (instructed by Birmingham City Council Legal and Democratic Services) for the authority.
Judgment Dates: 24 October 2012


Employment - Equality of treatment of men and women - Equal pay for equal work - Equality clause - Disputes as to, and enforcement of, requirement of equal treatment - Proceedings more conveniently disposed of in employment tribunal - Employees bringing equal pay claim in time in High Court - Claim out of time in tribunal - Employers seeking declaration that High Court had no jurisdiction to determine employees' claims - High Court and Court of Appeal ruling in employees' favour - Whether lower courts in error - Whether more convenient for employees' claims to be disposed of by tribunal - Whether fact employees' claims out of time in tribunal relevant consideration in exercise of discretion - Whether reasons for not bringing in time claims before tribunal relevant consideration - .

The Case

Employment Equality of treatment of men and women. The Supreme Court ruled that, on the true construction of the first part of of the Equal Pay Act 1970 and of the Equality Act 2010, a claim in respect of the operation of an equality clause could never be more conveniently disposed of by the tribunal if it would thereby be time-barred. If however a court concluded that instead of bringing a claim in court the claimant ought to have presented it before the tribunal in time, that might well be relevant when considering an order for costs.

Practice Areas

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