The issue

An employee secretly recorded her grievance and disciplinary meetings, including some private comments made when she was out of the room. These comments included an explicit discriminatory remark, as well as a comment by the manager that he was deliberately skipping key issues in the grievance. The employer did not want the Tribunal to hear these comments in a discrimination claim brought later by the employee.

The ruling

The Judge decided that the secret recording was admissible evidence. Although she recognised the importance of an employer deliberating in private, the comments could not be said to be part of the employer's legitimate consideration of the relevant grievance and disciplinary issues.

Comment

Employers should be aware that secret recordings by employees are increasingly a risk. While this case involved some quite extreme comments, all managers should take care not to make inappropriate comments at or about such meetings or decisions. Any comments that are not a legitimate consideration of the relevant issues may be admissible in evidence. Do not write or say anything that you would not want repeated later!

Punjab National Bank (International) Limited v. Gosain UKEAT/0003/14. A link to the case is here.