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13 July 2012
Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT)
HHJ Peter Clark
Continuous employment is not broken by an absence from employment which is due to ‘a temporary cessation of work' (s 212(3) ERA 1996). According to the EAT in this case, a 2-week period between dismissal for redundancy and re-employment did not break continuity as it was due to a ‘temporary cessation of work' - even though the re-employment was at a different pub run by a different group company.
H was made redundant when the pub he worked in closed. He started work at a different pub run by another company in the same group two weeks later. The tribunal held this was not a ‘temporary' cessation of work - the cessation at the pub where he worked was permanent. The EAT overruled the tribunal, saying it was ‘temporary' because H was only out of work for a short period. The two-weeks therefore did not break continuity. It seems to the writer that the EAT was muddling the absence from employment (which was temporary) with the cessation of work (which was permanent - it was replaced by different work). Section 212(3) requires the cessation of work, not the absence, to be ‘temporary'
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