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How to persuade a Judge to allow you to change your claim

Gateley Legal

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What was the case of Vaughan v Modality Partnership?

Once a claim or response has been submitted in an Employment Tribunal there is no right to vary it, to add for example further allegations. If changes are needed the party will be reliant upon the amendment being allowed on the discretion exercised by an Employment Judge. The importance of taking into account all the circumstances and balancing the interests of both parties when exercising that discretion was considered in the case of Vaughan v Modality Partnership.

What were the facts of the case?

Mrs Vaughan believed that during her employment she had made public interest disclosures which had resulted in her being subjected to detriments and eventually being dismissed. The proceedings issued had listed a number of alleged disclosures. However, when preparing statements in preparation for the hearing it became apparent that there had been other disclosures which might also qualify for protection that had been omitted. An application was made to include these in the proceedings.

Decision

The key factors that were identified in the leading case* were taken into account. These included the nature of the amendment, the applicability of time limits and the timing and manner of the application. It was recognised that there were other factors relevant. However, it was determined that it had not been shown when “considering the balance of injustice and hardship” there would be undue prejudice caused to the claimant.

Key takeaway point

The key factors that were identified in the leading case* were taken into account. These included the nature of the amendment, the applicability of time limits and the timing and manner of the application. It was recognised that there were other factors relevant. However, it was determined that it had not been shown when “considering the balance of injustice and hardship” there would be undue prejudice caused to the claimant.

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