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Monday, 24 March 2014
Thanks to Vanessa James of SA Law for preparing this case summary
In equal pay cases does a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) qualify as an 'associated employer' under s1(6) of the Equal Pay Act 1970 (now the Equality Act 2010) for the purpose of identifying a comparator employed by a different entity?
The Court of Session in Glasgow City Council v Unison
looked at an outsource by Glasgow City Council, whereby services for
parking enforcement and direct care services (care, cleaning, catering
and related services) were transferred into LLPs set up to operate those
outsourced services and the women who transferred wanted to rely upon
male comparators still employed by Glasgow council.
The court accepted that LLPs were companies in the broader sense (rather
than the narrower Companies Act 2006 definition) and could be
considered an associated employer on that basis.
Employers who deal in any outsourcing model (particularly where equal
pay claims have been more common in recent years such as local
authorities) need to be diligent to avoid inadvertently assuming large
financial liability for latent equal pay claims that may have arisen
outside of their knowledge and control.
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Daniel Barnett is a barrister at Outer Temple Chambers, with over 15 years' experience defending companies facing employment tribunal claims and associated commercial disputes. He is listed as a leading employment barrister in the ‘Legal 500′, and described in the Times Law Supplement as having “carved out a strong reputation”.
Daniel regularly advises and represents large and small businesses in discrimination claims, TUPE problems, team moves, removal of confidential business information, and unfair dismissal disputes. He has been appointed as employment law advisor to Acas since 2004, and is the author or co-author of seven legal textbooks.