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Law for Business

Knowhow - guidance - precedents

11 SEP 2012

Less favourable treatment on ground of marriage to a particular person ruled unlawful

The EAT has held in the case of Dunn v Institute of Cemetery and Crematorium Management that the protection from discrimination of married persons contained in the Sex Discrimination Act includes protection from less favourable treatment for being married to a particular person.

The claimant was employed to establish a new office for the employer. She went off sick following the rejection of a grievance she had raised and then, following a decision not to open the new office and the subsequent decision to delete her post, resigned. She claimed that the treatment was meted out to her because the employer's chief executive disliked her husband. The EAT agreed with the tribunal that the discrimination the claimant suffered was not on the ground of her married status but specifically because of the particular person she was married to, but was still covered by the protection afforded by the SDA.

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