[Thanks to Alfred Weiss of Zenith Chambers for providing this case summary]
Section 4A(3) of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 states that employers do not need to make reasonable adjustments in certain circumstances.
The EAT has, this week, handed down its decision in DWP v Alam, which is authority for the proposition that two questions arise when deciding whether s4A(3) applies:
- did the employer know both that the employee was disabled and that his disability was liable to affect him in the manner set out in section 4A(1)?
- if not, ought the employer to have known both that the employee was disabled and that his disability was liable to affect him in the manner set out in section 4A(1)?
The employer will be exempt from any duty to make reasonable adjustments if both those questions are answered in the negative.
Eastern and Coastal Kent PCT v Grey (see archive) is not, as previously thought, authority for the proposition that the requirements of section 4A(3)(b) must be interpreted cumulatively. If the employer could not reasonably have been expected to know that an employee's disability would have the effect in section 4A(1), no duty to make reasonable adjustments arises.
[Thanks also to George Branchflower, who successfully represented for the employer, for telling about this case]