Metroline West Limited v Ajaj UKEAT/0185/15 (2016) EMPLR 016
Mr Ajaj, a bus driver, was injured when he slipped on a wet floor at work. He took sick leave, claiming that his injuries preventing him from driving, and he sued his employers for the injuries. His employers did not believe his injuries were as severe as Mr Ajaj was claiming and arranged for covert surveillance. This showed Mr Ajaj was able to walk unaided and for longer than he had claimed he was able to.
Mr Ajaj was called to a disciplinary hearing and was dismissed for gross misconduct in falsely claiming sick pay, falsely claiming he was unable to work and falsely bringing a claim for injury at work.
An employment tribunal concluded that the dismissal was unfair because the evidence from the covert surveillance and from the Occupational Health report did not establish that Mr Ajaj was able to drive - just that he had exaggerated the effect his injuries had on his ability to walk.
The EAT overruled the tribunal. By exaggerating his walking impairment, Mr Ajaj acted dishonestly. It was irrelevant that there was no evidence to disprove his claim that he was unable to drive. The dismissal was therefore fair.
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