Business and Employment Law

Business and Employment Law

Question 1. The legal issue

The case presented is of a company Globe Tickets Ltd that wants to sue its formed employee Juliet. The legal issue in this case is of an employment contract that has been breached. The Globe Tickets Company is suing Juliet for a breach of one of the clause that was stated on the employment contact.

The laws governing the issue

According to the employment Act, there are certain parameters that must be met by an employment contract for it to be considered legal. Firstly, the contract must have been formed between the employee and the employer. Secondly, the terms of employment for the contract formed must be clearly stated. In the context of an employment, a contract is considered to have been formed when presented in a form of writing and the contracting parties append their signatures to declare that they agree with the terms and conditions stated in the contract (Kiazad, Seibert & Kraimer, 2014). Apart from the terms and conditions that are stated in the contract, there are certain promises that the employee offer to the employer in the contract. As indicated in the Employment Rights Act 1996 a number of clauses within the employment contract are actually promises made by the employees to the employer. Barak (2013) defines a promise as “A manifestation of intention to act or desist from acting in a certain manner so as to ensure the employer knows that a commitment has been made”.

Not all promise made by the employee are enforceable in law. As indicated in the case of William Hill v Tucker the promises made cannot mandate their own enforcement when standing alone. It is observed that the promises are enforced there is additional information. For instance the presence of a promissory estoppel where there is a reasonable reliance on a promise and a higher extent of injustice will occur if the promise is not enforced. Promises are also enforceable when they were done formally by the employee in form of writing, though in the context of employment, the enforceability of the promises is unlikely in cases where they were just formally made or due to moral obligation. There are certain clauses in the employment contract such as the clause on confidentiality agreement, non-competition, termination, arbitration and exclusive employment that are also significant when talking of the legal aspects of the contract. As long as the contract has been formed and the employee agrees to the conditions stated in the contract, then any deviation from the agreement set is considered a breach of the contract

Application

Focusing on the case of Jane, a contract was actually formed between the employee and the employer. It is observed that the contract was in written and the employee agreed to the term and conditions set by the employee thus a legal contract between the two exists (Kiazad, Seibert & Kraimer, 2014). The clause indicated in the employment contract that was signed by Jane refers to a non-competition clause set by the employer to protect the trade secrets needed to achieve a higher competition and good will of the company. Under this clause Jane was not expected to work for organizations that are direct competitors of Global Ticket Ltd or to sell tickets using the name of the company. According to Rayton & Yalabik (2014) a number of courts including the London Supreme court disapprove the non-competition agreement as a way of limiting the former employee to earn a living after the termination of his/her employment. As observed in the case of Hivac v Park Royal Scientific Instruments non-competition are only considered legal when they are supported with a form of consideration at the period of signing. The employee must receive a substance of value in exchange for promising to refrain from competition. Moreover, the non-competition agreement must be reasonable in terms of time, scope and geography for it to be used as a basis of justifying a contract breach.

The two year period provided is unreasonable to refrain from competition. In addition, the non-competition agreement must be accompanied with a consideration (Paillé & Mejía-Morelos, 2014). In the scenario presented it is not unclear whether there was a consideration or not. A consideration can only be proved when the contract was signed prior to the employment. Nevertheless, in case, that Jane signed the contract after working for sometimes, then there is no consideration and thus banking on the non-competition agreement is not suitable as a justification of the contract breach.

Conclusion

Even if Globe Tickets Ltd sues Jane, the company is likely to lack grounds for ascertaining that Jane breached the employment contract. Even if the organization offered the employee a consideration in form of employment, a two year duration is longer for one to refrain from any form of competition hence the courts are likely to disapprove the agreement. Globe is therefore likely to lose the case against Jane.

Question 2

Legal Issue

Legal issue presented in the case of Frank and Tight Defence Ltd is unfair dismissal from work. Pablo feels that he has been removed from work unfairly after taking a holiday leave for one week. Even though he has been working under self-employment terms, he wants to sue Defence Ltd for unfair dismissal

Laws governing the issue

The employment laws offer protection to the employees and not necessarily the self-employed persons. According to Hattab (2014) the employment laws ensures that the rights of the employees such as provision of fair wages, fair dismissal, and fair treatment at work amongst others are adhered to. Nevertheless, the employment law does not cover the self-employed persons in most cases since they are their own bosses. Nevertheless, as observed in the case of O’Kelly v Trusthouse Forte the self-employed are also entitled to protection against discrimination; their responsibilities are developed based on the terms and conditions of the contract. Moreover, the self-employed persons also entitled to security and health protection.

Application

The fact that the self-employed persons are not protected under the employment laws means that there are certain benefits of the employees that they cannot receive from the employer. For instance, the self-employed persons are not entitled to any pay when on holiday and they do not work (Hattab, 2014). Focusing on the above case, Frank is a considered a self-employed worker, as such, he is not to go on holiday and expect his position not to be filled. For a self-employed person the action of the employer is justified and cannot be enforced in a court of law.

The problem however, comes with the issue of the employment status of the workers. According   to Paz-Fuchs & Ronen (2012) self-employed persons are regarded as their own bosses and have direct control of the work being performed. These individuals are also required to control the hours of work, provide materials for the work and assumes the responsibility for the management of the work. In the event that the employer has full control of the activities that are to be conducted, then the two have an employee-employer relationship.

Just as observed in the case, the fact that Tight Defence Ltd provides the company equipment and materials for the guards to perform their duty means that they are already qualified as employees to the organization. In this case, Frank can make an argument that he was indeed an employee to the organization and not a self-employed per se and so should be entailed to benefits of an employee such as fair dismissal from work.

Conclusion

Frank is likely to win the case, by arguing that he was wrongly labeled as a self-employed worker when he was in essence an employee. Since an employee is entitled to fair treatment and fair termination from employment, he is likely to receive benefits for damages caused from the Tight Defence Ltd hence should go ahead and sue the company.

Question 3

Legal issue

The legal issue identified in the case of Ranjat is discrimination within the workplace based on religious grounds. Since his religion was against the workplace code of dressing, he felt he was discriminated against due to his refusal to comply with dressing code suggested by the organization.

Law governing the issue

Discrimination within the workplace is governed under the Discrimination Act 2010. Under this act, it is stated that no individual should be discriminated against because they are of a particular religion or hold a certain philosophical belief. The Discrimination Act 2010 indicates that a philosophical belief held by an individual must be genuine and more than an opinion. In addition, the belief must respect the rights of other individuals within the democratic society. The Act also indicates that every individual within the workplace has a right to manifest their religion in whichever way under the European Convention on Human Rights. This therefore means that everyone has a right to wear symbols, attire to show that they have a particular religion within the workplace. Nevertheless, the employers are also at liberty to prevent the employees from putting on certain kinds of attire if they are contrary to role being executed in the workplace.

Application

In the case presented, Ranjat felt that he has been discriminated against since he stated that adopting the required work place dress code will mean that he goes contrary to his religious belief. As such, his objection of the dress code made him loose the job. However, as indicated in the dicrimination Act 2010, there is no case of discrimination observed. It is also observed in the case of R v Birmingham City Council that an employer has the liberty to choose on the dress code for the employee even when it is contrary to their belief as long as the desired work requires that kind of dressing. According to Hattab (2014) a higher level of hygiene is needed in any food factory, as such beards are not encouraged. Moreover, accidents are likely to occur within the manufacturing plant due to cases of slippery floors hence the need to have safety gadgets on. Ranjat may claim that his unshaved hair would provide maximum protection for the head, however, his failure to mention this characteristic made them unaware of the possible benefits that his dress code may have.

The fact that he did not also pass the English test could also mean that he was disqualified on grounds of excellence. There is therefore no legal justification to show that he was discriminated against.

Conclusion

According to the Equality Act 2010, the occurrences in the case cannot be justifies a religious discrimination. The nature of the job required that Ranjat adopts a specific dress code to be able to offer quality services. This provision is allowed in the Act and the employers are allowed to ensure that the employees adopt the desired dress code as long as it is inevitable. This therefore justifies that Ranjat was not discriminated against; rather he could not be accommodated in the industry. The fact that he also failed the English further justifies that he did not just qualify for the job and was not discriminated against.

Question 4

Legal issues

Fred and Yogesh have been falsely accused and charged for the crime they did not conduct. As much as they were given an opportunity to make an appeal after the trail, they still lost the appeal leading to the conviction of Fred and Yogesh being acquainted. The major legal issue in this case is therefore false accusation and conviction for a crime.

Legal laws governing the issue

The employment laws require that employees are treated fairly within the workplace. Moreover, the law offers maximum protection to the employees in ensuring that they rights are well protected. False accusation of the employees within the workplace is a form of deceit or discrimination of the implicated individuals.

For a false accusation to result into conviction, there are likely to be certain loop holes that were experienced during the trial case. According to Paz-Fuchs & Ronen (2012) it is most likely that the attorney for the two charged individuals did not protect them well during the trial stage. Moreover, it is possible that there was a strong witness who presented wrong yet very convincing information on the involvement of the two in the fraud. As much as the witness presented the false information the inability of the defendants to justify that the information being presented made it possible for the trail court to accept the decision of the week court.

Application

In the case presented, it is evident that the two, Yogesh and Fred have been accused falsely of embezzling the organization’s firm, they are certain that they are not guilty. The fact that their fund embezzlement is associated with the new house that Fred moved into, further justifies that they are not guilty since Fred inherited the house from the Aunt. It is observed that Zanifar and Anila have been having a marital affair, indicating that there are the probable persons that could have taken cash.

It is evident that Fred and Yogesh even failed after making an appeal, thus the possibility of them changing the situation are minimal. Even if they moved to the Supreme Court, the same judgment is likely to be made. As observed in the case of Nethermere (St Neots) Ltd v Gardiner & Taverna in case that an individual is not satisfied with the outcome of the trial court, he or she can move to the appellate court and finally to the Supreme Court. However, the same findings are to be attained since the Supreme Court does not need any new evidence but focus on the review of the information presented at the trial court to ascertain whether they made a satisfactory legal decision.

Conclusion

Since no new evidence is to be presented in the Supreme Court, the decision made is likely to remain as it is. Thus Fred and Yogesh should consider leaving the decision as it is and concentrate on building their new career and reputation.