OCS One Complete Solution Ltd (Represented by Irish Business and Employers' Confederation) v Paul Grant (Represented by Services Industrial Professional Technical Union)
Labour Court (Ireland)
1. Appeal of Adjudication Officer's Decision No: ADJ-00008300, Complaint/Dispute Reference No: CA-000011012.
2. The Worker appealed the Decision of the Adjudication Officer to the Labour Court on 21 December 2017. A Labour Court hearing took place on 09 March, 2018. The following is the Decision of the Court:
This is an appeal by Paul Grant against an Adjudication Officer's Decision ADJ-00008300 given Under the European Communities (Protection of Employees on Transfer of Undertakings) Regulations 2003 ( S.I.131 of 2003). The Adjudication Officer found that there was a technical breach of Section 8 of S.I. 131 of 2003 and that the complaint was well founded. However, the Adjudication Officer found that compensation was not appropriate.
The Complainant was employed by the Respondent as a Pest Control Technician since July 2003. On the 18/01/2017 the Complainant received an email asking him to come to the office of the Respondent at 1.30pm that day. When the Complainant arrived at the office he was met by the managing director who informed him that his employment had been taken over by a named company. He was advised that if he objected he would be out of a job. The Complainant was handed a letter dated 18 th January 2017 which informed him of the transfer and stated “….has today made a strategic divestment of its Canon Pest Control interests..” In effect this meant the Complainant was only told of the transfer after it had occurred. This is contrary to the requirement of section 8 of the Regulations.
In late 2016 the Respondent began discussions with the Transferee about selling the Pest Control business division of their company to the Transferee. The Transferee is a publicly listed company so the negotiations were carried out in the utmost secret and confidentiality. After months of discussion the Transferee acquired the business on the 17 th January 2017. On the 18 th of January which was the earliest available opportunity the Respondent invited the effected employees to a meeting to discuss the situation. It is the Respondents position that it was not reasonably practical to consult with the employees affected 30 days in advance of the transfer but they did engage with them as soon as was practical after the transfer. Nothing changed for the Claimant and he suffered no detriment. The Respondent felt because of the confidential nature of the discussions they had no option but to waive the 30 day consultation.
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