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In Industrial Tribunal case number 3642/CCG, the applicant claimed that he had been subjected to discrimination, lack of equal pay, a breach of the grievance procedure under the collective agreement, lack of payment of a performance bonus and constructive dismissal.

Firstly considering discrimination, the applicant argued that he was not allowed to avail himself of a career break to work with a company operating in the financial services industry. The reason for this was that there was a specific exclusion in the same collective agreement. The Tribunal stated that such a career break was within the absolute discretion of the Bank and therefore it could refuse a request of this nature. Moreover, the person who the applicant used as a comparator to base his discrimination claim on was in a completely different situation from that of the applicant, with the consequence that the applicant’s discrimination claim was rejected.

In relation to the claim for equal pay, the Tribunal commented that the comparators’ role was again completely different from that of the applicant and none of the comparators had been brought forward to give evidence on the duties which they carried out with the Bank. Therefore, this claim was also rejected.

The applicant also claimed that he had not been allowed to raise a grievance with the Bank when his request for a career break was not allowed. The Tribunal noted that what the Bank had not allowed was for the applicant to be represented by a particular person. This because of pending issues between the Bank and the chosen representative which were particularly serious in nature. On the basis of this the Tribunal considered that the Bank had been justified in refusing to allow the applicant’s request.

As regards payment of the performance bonus, the Tribunal declared that it had no competence at law to decide such money claims.

Finally, the Tribunal examined the applicant’s claim for constructive dismissal based on the alleged breaches considered above. The Tribunal held that in order for a case of constructive dismissal to be successful, the applicant must prove: a breach of contract by the employer, that the breach was of fundamental importance, that the employee left as a result of such a breach and that the employee acted in a timely manner when taking the decision to leave employment. The Tribunal noted that in this case, no such fundamental breach was proven. Moreover, from the wording of the letter of resignation, it did not result that the applicant had left because of any alleged breach committed by the Bank. The Tribunal also considered that termination had not been immediate as the applicant had decided to work his notice period.

The Industrial Tribunal thereby rejected all the applicant’s claims.

The Bank was represented by Dr Christine Calleja.

Disclaimer: This document does not purport to give legal, financial or tax advice. Should you require further information or legal assistance, please do not hesitate to contact Dr. Christine Calleja