Thanks to Jennifer Danvers of Cloisters for preparing this case summary.
Is it an error of law to allow a late application for reconsideration without giving a Respondent a chance to make representations?
Yes (unsurprisingly), held the EAT in The Practice Surgeries Ltd & Secretary of State for Health v Dr Srivatsa.
The employment tribunal failed to dispose of an application made in 2011 by the first Respondent for dismissal of the Claimant's claim and judgment following withdrawal. The Claimant issued proceedings in the High Court in 2012 and, in 2014, the first Respondent reiterated its request for dismissal of the employment tribunal claim. In October 2014 the Employment Judge dismissed the claim, three years after the initial application.
The Claimant made an application for reconsideration of the dismissal in February 2015. This was granted by the Employment Judge who revoked her previous order dismissing the claim.
Mrs Justice Slade, allowed the appeal against the revocation order on the following grounds:
- the employment tribunal had failed to invite a response from the second Respondent to the application for reconsideration (contrary to Rule 72 Employment Tribunal Rules 2013);
- The second Respondent was not sent the revocation order (contrary to Rule 60 Employment Tribunal Rules 2013);
- The Employment Judge had failed to give any reasons for allowing an extension of time of nearly 100 days in relation to the Claimant’s application to reconsider; and
- the employment tribunal had erred in allowing the reconsideration on the basis that the Claimant’s view was not known at the time of dismissing the claim when the employment tribunal had, in fact, been made aware of the Claimant’s objections to the 2011 application.
Mrs Justice Slade held that the October 2014 order dismissing the claim stood, despite the Claimant's objections in relation to the time elapsed between the initial application and judgment.