April 16, 2019

An employment tribunal rejected an unfair dismissal claim after it was submitted one day too late.

Wendy Suddes was released from her role as the north of England Regional Manager by the British Horse Society. 

She claims that her dismissal caused her to suffer from stress, which then made it difficult for her to cope with the employment tribunal application.

The dismissal took place towards the end of May, 2018.

Suddes submitted her claim on 15 October, yet this was one day after the employment tribunal’s cut off date. 

Within a post on her personal Facebook page, Suddes argues that she was the victim of "a series of unjust disciplinary actions", which then lead to her dismissal.

In 2017, Suddes made a whistleblowing disclosure that was further investigated by PwC. However, the complaint against the BHS was not upheld.

In the documents released by the tribunal, it’s evident that stress and anxiety as a result of Suddes’ treatment by the BHS, and her subsequent BHS, were the reasoning she claimed for why her application to the tribunal was late. Suddes stated, at the hearing in Middlesbrough, Teesside, that she believed she had until 20 October to submit her claim.

The judge accepted that “the claimant genuinely believes that she is the victim of a grave injustice at the hands of the respondent and that their treatment of her has caused enormous frustration, stress and upset." However, the argument for being one day late was not accepted.

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About the author 

James Rowland

James is the Commercial Director at Neathouse Partners and regularly writes articles surrounding issues in HR & Employment Law. Outside of the office, James is a keen Cricketer, playing in the Cheshire League for Nantwich CC. He also loves going to watch his football team, Crewe Alexandra. Feel free to connect with James on LinkedIn.

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