Disability discrimination: What is a normal ‘day to day activity?’

Under the Equality Act 2010 it is unlawful for employers to discriminate against disabled employees. The first hurdle for any employee alleging disability discrimination is to establish that they are ‘disabled’ under the Act.

The Act defines a disability as a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long term adverse effect on an individual’s ability to carry out normal day to day activities. Therefore, one of the key questions when applying this definition is what amounts to a ‘normal day to day activity?’

In the case of Banaszczyk v Booker the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) found that a back condition amounted to a disability, in part because lifting and loading heavy cases onto a pallet truck as part of the Claimant’s job was deemed to be a ‘normal day to day activity’.

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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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Tim Scott

Partner - Head of Employment (Liverpool)

I specialise in employment law and have wide experience of giving practical advice to employers in the private and public sectors on both contentious and non-contentious issues.