Is it reasonable to dismiss an employee at the behest of a third party, without considering whether the request of the Third Party is justified?

No, says the EAT in Bancroft v Interserve.

Many employers seek to rely upon third party pressure without further ado. This is a warning to employers that they must make all due and proper enquiry as to the circumstances giving rise to the third party pressure and if necessary, to consider whether there is anything that they can do to get the third party to change their minds thus allowing the employee to resume work without dismissing. If the third party will not be swayed, the employer is duty bound to seek alternative employment for the employee before moving to dismissal.

Dean Morris



The Regulations appear to contemplate and encourage a process where Claimants are unrepresented. I note the EC form proposed contains no details of any appointed representative. With this in mind, I am struggling to understand how a lay unrepresented Claimant (a) will fully appreciate what legal claims they may or may not have and on which they are being asked to conciliate; and (b) the value of those claims, so the Claimant will be able to make an informed decision on whether to settle via EC in the terms proposed.


As part of the EC process, it seems that ACAS will potentially be put in the unenviable position of having to advise Claimants about the nature of their potential claims and their value. It is clearly undesirable for ACAS to be put in such a position and one that may ultimately lead to satellite litigation in the form of claims for negligence if Claimants are not fully advised as they would be if they had been legally represented in a normal Solicitor/Client relationship.


I am also concerned about the settlements being concluded via COT3 agreement, where the lay Claimant has not taken legal advice before agreeing to settle in those terms and compromise any future actions. If there were compromising their claims via Compromise Agreement, they would have that right.


I am all for early conciliation but it must involve, contemplate and encourage legal representation to be an integral part of the process for what are, to me, abundantly obvious reasons. No doubt this would also assist ACAS greatly as well.

Dean Morris


Well, our new refreshed site is now finished – hope you like it.

We shall be working on uploading some more content into “The Law Explained” over coming weeks to assist our users navigate around this complex and fluid area of law.

We are here to try and help potential Claimants to enforce their legal rights through the Employment Tribunal  process, so please contact us!