Carillion workers win legal victory in compensation fight

A group of 263 Carillion workers has won a legal victory as they seek compensation following the company’s collapse in 2018.

The workers, represented by the Unite union, claim that Carillion failed to inform and consult them before they lost their jobs when the business went into compulsory liquidation.

This week, the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) ruled that the case could proceed, dismissing the Carillion group’s appeal.

In January, the Employment Tribunal rejected Carillion’s argument that there were “special circumstances” applicable to the group company’s collapse that meant no protective awards should be made to workers for consultation failures that occurred. Following the decision, Carillion mounted an appeal that was heard in the Employment Appeal Tribunal on 6 July.

However, in an oral judgment last week, the president of the Employment Appeal Tribunal rejected Carillion’s argument and ruled that the decision made at the original employment tribunal to allow the cases to continue was correct.

A seven-week hearing is now scheduled for 2022, when the decision will be made over whether or not to grant the employees a protective award for Carillion’s failure to inform and consult them.

Howard Beckett, Unite assistant general secretary for legal affairs, said: “This was a vitally important case not just for the former Carillion workers but all workers, who lose their jobs without warning in the future.

“Unite made a commitment when Carillion collapsed to do everything possible to protect our members who lost their jobs without warning through no fault of their own. Three and half years later we are still fighting for our members to receive the compensation they deserve.

“While this was an important victory the battle for compensation for our members is far from over and Unite will continue to represent them until this case is finally resolved.”

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