Judge McMullen refers to the case of The Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis v Mr C Rixon as taking on a narrow point about an ‘arcane aspect’ of Employment Tribunal procedure.
That alone is enough reason to dig deeper ………
Mr Rixon was a serving police officer granted anonymity at the Stockwell Tube inquest. He raised a whistleblowing claim in the prescribed time limit but on advice did not disclose his name or address. The claim was rejected for want of those details. An amended claim (including name and address) was submitted five weeks after the limitation date. At a Case Management Discussion, it was determined that the Claimant’s claim was in time and this decision was the subject of the appeal to the EAT.
The information required for starting a claim includes the Claimant’s name and address, subject only to national security and restricted reporting orders. Hence, the initial rejection of the claim. However, the Tribunal have jurisdiction to accept an invalidly presented claim if it was (a) not presented because it was not reasonably practicable to do so and (b) it was presented in a reasonable time thereafter. Hence the later acceptance of the claim.
The Judge determined that it was not reasonably practicable for him to submit his form in time because of his understanding of the state of play and the claim was presented within a reasonable period of time some five weeks later. Judge McMullen, at the EAT, described this decision as ‘unarguably right’.