[Thanks to Keira Gore of Outer Temple Chambers for preparing this case summary]
The Court of Appeal has handed down its decision in Driver v Air India Ltd holding that where a contractual payment is not specified the law implies a reasonable sum.
The principal issue in this case was whether Mr Driver was entitled to be paid for ad hoc overtime by Air India under a contract of employment. The contract provided that the provisions regarding overtime payments were "set out in notices and circulars issued by Air India from time to time".
No such notices or circulars were issued, but Mr Driver was paid for overtime in the past. Air India argued that in the absence of any notices or circulars there was no contractual right to payment for overtime. Air India could not explain the previous payments.
Lord Justice Rix, giving judgment in favour of Mr Driver, found that where a contractual payment is not specified the law implies a reasonable sum. Further, although a contract is not to be construed by subsequent conduct, the previous payment of overtime was highly relevant.