The Employment Appeals Tribunal has held that following a TUPE transfer an agreed variation to an employee’s salary resulting from a mistaken belief that there was an error in pay which needed to be corrected was valid and effective.

What does this mean?

An agreed variation of an employment contract is only effective following a TUPE transfer if the transfer itself was not the sole or principal reason for the variation.

What should employers do?

This was an unusual case involving a genuine mistaken belief that had no relationship with the TUPE transfer and therefore broke the link between the transfer and the variation in question. If seeking to change terms and conditions of employment, employers should ensure that the reason for seeking to make the change is not connected to the transfer.