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Territorial Jurisdiction - Cabin Crew

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[Thanks to Emma Price of Temple Garden Chambers for preparing this case summary]

The Court of Appeal has handed down its decision in the case of British Airways Plc v Ms Eliza Mak & Ors, which is authority for the proposition that jurisdiction is conferred on an ET to hear race and age discrimination claims provided the Claimant does his or her work "partly" in Great Britain.

The Claimants were cabin crew of Chinese nationality, who were based in Hong Kong. The case turned on whether employment was "at an establishment in Great Britain" for the purposes of s.8(1) of the Race Relations Act 1976 and the similar provision under Reg. 10(1) of the Employment Equality (Age) Regulations 2006. The Court of Appeal found that there was no error of law in the ET's ruling that Ms Mak (the lead Claimant) did her work partly in Great Britain, despite the fact that this made up a small percentage of her overall work. Provided Ms Mak did her work "partly" in Great Britain then s.8(1) was satisfied. This having been established, s.8(4) did not apply, s.8(1) taking priority over the statutory deeming process.