As always, we round off with some light-hearted titillation as a just reward for wading through the legal mumbo-jumbo above. This month’s most shocking tabloid tale goes to a barrister who was dismissed for spanking a colleague.
Robert Jones was a barrister for Lexlaw. Mr Jones and a female colleague exchanged messages about a BDSM sex contract which included safe words and limitations. Mr Jones and the women then had a spanking session in a partner’s office whilst he was in court.
Months later, Mr Jones handed in his notice following a pay dispute. He was then disciplined for the previous spanking session and dismissed. Mr Jones alleges the dismissal was a prima-facie excuse to avoid paying him his notice and believes his sexual preferences were discovered due to his personal communications being monitored. He has bought a data protection claim against his employer together with an unfair dismissal claim.
Mr Jones has said he is not fazed by having his sexual preferences aired in public. However, this blasé attitude could result in some unusual skill endorsements on LinkedIn. Specialisms of spanking and sadomasochism certainly stand out in a beige world of drafting, advocacy and dispute resolution!
This case is an interesting example of how employers need to be careful when handling data concerning their employees. Given the GDPR 2018 came into force last week, it would be interesting to see how similar – if there are any – cases would be handled now