It has been reported that Unite, the union which supported the workers in the holiday pay ruling in the Employment Appeal Tribunal last month, has decided not to appeal to the Court of Appeal. If confirmed, this means that the element of the EAT’s ruling that limits the ability of workers to claim for historic underpayments of holiday pay will stay put, at least for now.
The situation may change if either of the employers involved in this litigation decide to appeal, and of course it does not prevent the ruling being looked at a later date if another similar dispute reaches the Court of Appeal. Another test case, this time involving commission, is being heard in the employment tribunal next year. There is a possibility that the claimants in that case will not be so forgiving about back pay, since their opponent is British Gas rather than the relatively small engineering companies involved in the recent EAT ruling.
For now the Government – which has convened a task-force to consider the implications of the ruling for employers – will breathe a sigh of relief. But Unite’s decision is unlikely to be a permanent answer.