In case 161/2022/LM, delivered on 11th October 2023, the Court of Appeal upheld the decision of the Industrial Tribunal, which found justifiable reasons for dismissal.
Following the Tribunal’s conclusion that the grounds for dismissal presented by the defendant company were justified, and consequently, the dismissal was fair, the former employee contested this decision in front of the Court of Appeal. The ex-employee requested the Court to overturn the Tribunal’s decision, arguing that the Tribunal had not correctly assessed the evidence. In response, the company contended that the appeal was frivolous and vexatious as no point of law had been raised.
While the Court of Appeal had recently given a rather broad interpretation to the requirement that appeals from the Industrial Tribunal must be based on points of law, in this case, the Court adopted a strict approach to interpreting the language of the law. The Court of Appeal stated that its first task was to determine whether the appellant was raising any point of law in their appeal. It was found that the only ground of appeal was that the Tribunal had not made a correct evaluation of the evidence. The Court concluded that such a ground could not serve as the basis or be part of an appeal from a decision of the Industrial Tribunal, as this contravenes what the Employment and Industrial Relations Act as provided in Article 82(3). On this basis, the Court deemed the appeal frivolous and vexatious and ordered the former employee to cover the expenses of the appeal proceedings.
The Company was represented by Dr Christine Calleja.