The EAT case of Lancaster University v The University and College Union has examined the issue of what amounts to effective consultation (section 188 Trade Union and Labour Relations Consolidation Act 1992) in order to avoid a protective award.

The EAT agreed that there had not been effective consultation and highlighted some practical points to note when conducting a similar exercise:-

  • Sending of a proposed list of redundancies without the additional information required by section 188(4) is insufficient as it denies reps the information they need to challenge the selection process;
  • Labelling the lists ‘for consultation purposes’ falls well short of the statutory requirements; and
  • The Tribunal were correct in applying a ‘top down’ approach in respect of compensation and placing the breach at the top end and then looking for mitigation.

An interesting case to reference if faced with a claim in respect of a protective award.