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Whistleblowing and Protected Disclosures

We are Whistleblowing Solicitors and Protected Disclosure Solicitors in London:


To bring a whistleblowing claim under s43A-K Employment Rights Act 1996:


One:  The worker must make a disclosure of ‘information’ either verbally or in writing. In Cavendish Munroe Professional Risks Management Ltd v Geduld [2010] IRLR 38 the EAT held that to qualify as a protected disclosure, ‘information’ must be disclosed, not simply an allegation or a concern.


In Kilraine v London Borough of Wandsworth [2018] EWCA Civ 1436, the Court of Appeal held that, for an  ‘allegation’ to also constitute “information” it has to have a sufficient factual content and specificity such as is capable of tending to show one of the matters listed in the legislation.


The EAT has given the following example: ‘communicating ‘information’ would be ‘the wards have not been cleaned for the past two weeks. Yesterday sharps were left lying around’. Contrasted with that would be a statement that ‘You are not complying with Health and Safety requirements’. In our view this would be an allegation not information’.


Two: The disclosure must relate to one of six types of prescribed failure:

(1)      Criminal offences;

(2)      Breach of any legal obligation;

(3)      Miscarriages of justice;

(4)      Danger to the health and safety of any individual;

(5)      Damage to the environment; and

(6)      Concealing information (deliberately) about the above malpractice.


Three: The Worker must reasonably believe that the information tends to show one of those failures.


Four: The Worker must reasonably believe that the disclosure of information is ‘in the public interest’?


Five: The worker must make the disclosure to his or her employer or a prescribed person (normally the employer).


Six: The worker then needs to be able to satisfy a Tribunal that he or she suffered a detriment or dismissal because of the Protected Disclosure, and not for any other reason.


It is unlawful to subject an employee to a detriment as a result of making a protected disclosure or to dismiss the employee as a result of making a protected disclosure.


Normally employees cannot claim unfair dismissal if they have less than two years service. However if they are dismissed as a result of making  a Protected Disclosure, they don’t need two years service and can claim Automatic Unfair Dismissal.


Such claims can be quite technical in nature, and are sometimes difficult to prove.


Contact us today to discuss this further.


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    Reculver Solicitors Ltd (Company No. 6910066)
    1st Floor, 330 High Holborn, London, WC1V 7QT.
    Tel: 0207 118 0950
    Fax: 0207 477 2276
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