Whistle while you work but only if its in the public interest

Blowing the whistle can be the weapon of choice for senior executives as part of their exit strategy particularly if they do not have a discrimination card to play. Once they make a qualifying protected disclosure they acquire the right not to be subjected to any detriment for making that disclosure and any dismissal for doing so will be automatically unfair. Additionally the two year length of service requirement does not apply and any compensation awarded is not subject to the statutory cap.

In June 2013 changes were made to the test for a qualifying disclosure in the Employment Rights Act 1996, including a new requirement that a worker must reasonably believe that their disclosure was ‘in the public interest’. This new public interest requirement was introduced to close a loophole created by the case of Parkins v Sodexho under which workers were able to allege that their disclosure was protected under whistleblowing legislation, even though it related to their own personal employment contract.

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This information is intended as a general discussion surrounding the topics covered and is for guidance purposes only. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be regarded as a substitute for taking legal advice. DWF is not responsible for any activity undertaken based on this information.

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Andrew Chamberlain

Partner - Head of Employment & Chair of the SDE

I am a Partner, the National Head of the Employment Team and the Chair of the Service Delivery Executive (SDE), which is focused on building better solutions for clients.