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Anonymity Order

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Is an individual, who was not a party or a witness in tribunal proceedings, entitled to have her name anonymised in the resulting judgment, under rule 50 of the Employment Tribunal Rules of Procedure 2013?

Yes, sometimes, held the EAT in TYU v ILA Spa Ltd.

The Claimant resigned from ILA Spa Ltd in 2016. In 2018, she was named in proceedings brought by her former colleagues against her former employer, in relation to allegations of misconduct. The Claimant was not a witness but had provided two documents to her colleagues. The tribunal dismissed the claims, but referred to allegations against the Claimant in the judgment, including: witness intimidation during internal proceedings, signing off false invoices and theft.

Subsequently, the Claimant contacted the tribunal, requesting that her name be anonymised or certain parts of the judgment redacted. She was not aware her name would come up in the hearing and/or judgment. She stated that if you googled her name, the judgment comes up, which was damaging to her reputation and employment prospects.

The tribunal held that the Claimant could not have a reasonable expectation of privacy when the matters had been discussed in a public hearing.

The EAT disagreed, holding that the tribunal had erred in assuming that the Claimant’s Article 8 right to private life was not engaged. It also failed to adequately carry out the balancing exercise of the Claimant’s Article 8 right against Article 6 (right to a fair trial) and Article 10 (freedom of expression), or to make an assessment of the impact on the Claimant.

The EAT ordered anonymisation of the EAT and tribunal judgment as an interim measure. The case was remitted for final determination of the issue.