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Claimant's claim Struck Out for Speaking to Journalist during Evidence

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Can a tribunal strike out a claim if the Claimant discusses the case during evidence?

Yes, held the EAT in Chidzoy v BBC.

The Claimant discussed elements of the case and her evidence with a journalist while under oath. The discussion was overheard by the Respondent. The tribunal adjourned asking the parties to provide statements.

The Respondent successfully applied for strike out pursuant to rules 37(1)(b) and (e) Schedule 1 Employment Tribunals (Constitution and Rule of Procedure) Regulation 2013 citing unreasonable conduct by the Claimant and the impossibility of a fair hearing. The Claimant had flagrantly disregarded warnings given to her on at least six occasions. The Claimant appealed.

The EAT agreed with the tribunal. The test in Bolch v Chipman had been fairly applied. The considerations are (1) whether the proceedings have been conducted unreasonably; (2) whether a fair trial is still possible; (3) what remedy is appropriate and whether a lesser sanction might be more appropriate; and (4) the consequences of a Debarring Order.

Thanks to Karen Jackson of didlaw for preparing this case summary.